Journal article

Mate-guarding intensity increases with breeding synchrony in the colonial fairy martin, Petrochelidon ariel

Martijn Hammers, Nikolaus von Engelhardt, Naomi E Langmore, Jan Komdeur, Simon C Griffith, Michael JL Magrath



Extrapair paternity (EPP) is common in many socially monogamous species, influencing patterns of sexual selection and shaping many aspects of reproductive behaviour. However, factors explaining variation in the occurrence of EPP, both within and between populations, remain poorly understood. One ecological factor that has received considerable attention is breeding synchrony, but the proposed mechanisms remain contentious and the findings from the large number of correlational studies have been inconsistent. Mate guarding, a behavioural tactic to limit paternity loss, may be fundamental to any relationship between EPP and breeding synchrony. However, few studies have investigated how guardin..

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University of Melbourne Researchers


Awarded by Australian Research Council

Funding Acknowledgements

We are very grateful to all the landholders and managers along the Coleambally outflow channel for allowing us to work on their properties. Special thanks to Bill and Mary-Anne Butcher of Elm-sleigh station on whose property we stayed. We thank Peter Korsten and IainWoxvold for their invaluable help in the field, Niels Dingemanse for statistical advice, and Tom Pizzari, Richard Wagner and an anonymous referee for helpful comments on the manuscript. This work was supported by the Australian Research Council (DP055880 to N.E.L., S. C. G. and M.J.L.M). M. H. received funding from the Marco Polo fund and Groninger Universiteits Fund.