Journal article

Mating system, philopatry and patterns of kinship in the cooperatively breeding subdesert mesite Monias benschi

N Seddon, W Amos, G Adcock, P Johnson, K Kraaijeveld, FJL Kraaijeveld-Smit, W Lee, GD Senapathi, RA Mulder, JA Tobias

MOLECULAR ECOLOGY | WILEY | Published : 2005


In the first molecular study of a member of the threatened avian family, Mesitornithidae, we used nine polymorphic microsatellite loci to elucidate parentage, patterns of within-group kinship and occurrence of extra-group paternity in the subdesert mesite Monias benschi, of southwest Madagascar. We found this cooperatively breeding species to have a very fluid mating system. There was evidence of genetic monogamy and polygynandry: of the nine groups with multiple offspring, six contained one breeding pair with unrelated helpers and three contained multiple male and female breeders with related helpers. Although patterns of within-group kinship varied, there was a strong positive relationship..

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University of Melbourne Researchers