Age-dependent inbreeding risk and offspring fitness costs in female black grouse

Soulsbury, Carl D. and Alatalo, Rauno V. and Lebigre, Christope and Rokka, Kaisa and Siitari, Heli (2011) Age-dependent inbreeding risk and offspring fitness costs in female black grouse. Biology Letters, 7 (6). pp. 853-855. ISSN 1744-9561

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1098/rsbl.2011.0379

Abstract

Dispersal is an important mechanism used to
avoid inbreeding. However, dispersal may only
be effective for part of an individual’s lifespan
since, post-dispersal individuals that breed over
multiple reproductive events may risk mating
with kin of the philopatric sex as they age. We
tested this hypothesis in black grouse Tetrao
tetrix, and show that yearling females never
mated with close relatives whereas older females
did. However, matings were not with direct kin
suggesting that short-distance dispersal to sites
containing kin and subsequent overlap of reproductive
lifespans between males and females
were causing this pattern. Chick mass was lower
when kinship was high, suggesting important
fitness costs associated with inbred matings.
This study shows that increased inbreeding risk
might be a widespread yet rarely considered
cost of ageing.

Item Type:Article
Additional Information:Dispersal is an important mechanism used to avoid inbreeding. However, dispersal may only be effective for part of an individual’s lifespan since, post-dispersal individuals that breed over multiple reproductive events may risk mating with kin of the philopatric sex as they age. We tested this hypothesis in black grouse Tetrao tetrix, and show that yearling females never mated with close relatives whereas older females did. However, matings were not with direct kin suggesting that short-distance dispersal to sites containing kin and subsequent overlap of reproductive lifespans between males and females were causing this pattern. Chick mass was lower when kinship was high, suggesting important fitness costs associated with inbred matings. This study shows that increased inbreeding risk might be a widespread yet rarely considered cost of ageing.
Keywords:inbreeding, natal dispersal, breeding dispersal, parental relatedess
Subjects:C Biological Sciences > C120 Behavioural Biology
C Biological Sciences > C300 Zoology
Divisions:College of Science > School of Life Sciences
ID Code:6406
Deposited By: Carl Soulsbury
Deposited On:03 Oct 2012 16:04
Last Modified:13 Mar 2013 09:15

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