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The short- and long-term fitness consequences of natal dispersal in a wild bird population

Nevoux, M., Arlt, D., Nicoll, M., Jones, C. and Norris, K. (2013) The short- and long-term fitness consequences of natal dispersal in a wild bird population. Ecology Letters, 16 (4). pp. 438-445. ISSN 1461-0248

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1111/ele.12060

Abstract/Summary

Dispersal is a key process in population and evolutionary ecology. Individual decisions are affected by fitness consequences of dispersal, but these are difficult to measure in wild populations. A long-term dataset on a geographically closed bird population, the Mauritius kestrel, offers a rare opportunity to explore fitness consequences. Females dispersed further when the availability of local breeding sites was limited, whereas male dispersal correlated with phenotypic traits. Female but not male fitness was lower when they dispersed longer distances compared to settling close to home. These results suggest a cost of dispersal in females. We found evidence of both short- and long-term fitness consequences of natal dispersal in females, including reduced fecundity in early life and more rapid aging in later life. Taken together, our results indicate that dispersal in early life might shape life history strategies in wild populations.

Item Type:Article
Refereed:Yes
Divisions:Faculty of Life Sciences > School of Agriculture, Policy and Development > Biodiversity, Crops and Agroecosystems Division > Centre for Agri-environmental Research (CAER)
ID Code:30838
Uncontrolled Keywords:Dispersal cost;fecundity;lifetime reproductive success;long-term fitness cost;Mauritius kestrel;natal dispersal distance;reproductive cost;site availability
Publisher:Wiley

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