Viability selection creates negative heterozygosity–fitness correlations in female Black Grouse Lyrurus tetrix

Soulsbury, Carl and Lebigre, Christophe (2018) Viability selection creates negative heterozygosity–fitness correlations in female Black Grouse Lyrurus tetrix. Journal of Ornithology, 159 (1). pp. 93-101. ISSN 2193-7192

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There is widespread interest in the relationship between individual genetic diversity and fitness–related traits (heterozygosity–fitness correlations, HFC). Most studies found weak continuous increases of fitness with increasing heterozygosity while negative HFC have rarely been reported. Negative HFC are expected in cases of outbreeding depression and outbreeding is rare in natural populations; but negative HFC may also arise through viability selection acting on low heterozygosity individuals at an early stage producing a skew in the heterozygosity distribution leading to negative HFCs. We tested this idea using survival and clutch parameters (egg mass, egg volume, chick mass, clutch size) collected in female black grouse Lyrurus tetrix and carried out simulations to determine how survival selection may impact the HFCs measured using clutch parameters. We show that survival is positively related to both individual heterozygosity and female body mass. There is a positive effect of body mass on all clutch parameters, but the selective mortality of females with both low heterozygosity and low body mass led to over representation of high heterozygosity-low body mass females and hence a negative relationship between egg volume and heterozygosity. Using simulated data, we show that survival selection acting on both low body mass and low heterozygosity leads to a skew in the quality of females breeding, resulting in negative HFCs with egg volume. Our results indicate that survival selection can strongly influence the strength and direction of any HFC that occur later in life and that only an integration of all aspects of individuals’ reproductive investment and reproductive success can enable us to fully understand how heterozygosity can shape individual’s fitness.

Keywords:heterozygosity, lekking, fitness, HFC, survival
Subjects:C Biological Sciences > C120 Behavioural Biology
C Biological Sciences > C300 Zoology
C Biological Sciences > C182 Evolution
Divisions:College of Science > School of Life Sciences
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ID Code:27658
Deposited On:14 Jun 2017 15:34

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