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séminaire – lundi 16 décembre 2019

Deciding is hard! Interplay between individual phenotype and environmental conditions on mating patterns, timing of reproduction and sex allocation

par Thomas Merkling

Amphithéâtre Courtois, à 13 heures

 

Throughout their life, individuals are regularly exposed to several alternatives differing in their consequences in terms of fitness (i.e. ‘decisions’). My research mostly focuses on reproductive decisions and especially on how individual characteristics and environmental conditions interact to influence such decisions. I will first explore the factors explaining when and why some pairs divorce and others remain faithful in a long-lived seabird, the thick-billed murre (Uria lomvia). Then, I will investigate how the social environment, and the information individuals can gather from it, interacts with their personal information to impact laying date in the black-legged kittiwake (Rissa tridactyla). Finally, I will consider sex allocation decisions in two ways: a) after showing that sons are more expensive to rear than daughters in the kittiwake, I will use a long-term experimental study to examine whether parents in poor condition avoid the production of sons when food is less abundant. b) To determine whether a ubiquitous underlying mechanism of sex-ratio adjustment exists, I did a meta-analysis on maternal testosterone and offspring sex-ratio across birds and mammals.

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Deciding is hard! Interplay between individual phenotype and environmental conditions on mating patterns, timing of reproduction and sex allocation

par Thomas Merkling

Amphithéâtre Courtois, à 13 heures

 

Throughout their life, individuals are regularly exposed to several alternatives differing in their consequences in terms of fitness (i.e. ‘decisions’). My research mostly focuses on reproductive decisions and especially on how individual characteristics and environmental conditions interact to influence such decisions. I will first explore the factors explaining when and why some pairs divorce and others remain faithful in a long-lived seabird, the thick-billed murre (Uria lomvia). Then, I will investigate how the social environment, and the information individuals can gather from it, interacts with their personal information to impact laying date in the black-legged kittiwake (Rissa tridactyla). Finally, I will consider sex allocation decisions in two ways: a) after showing that sons are more expensive to rear than daughters in the kittiwake, I will use a long-term experimental study to examine whether parents in poor condition avoid the production of sons when food is less abundant. b) To determine whether a ubiquitous underlying mechanism of sex-ratio adjustment exists, I did a meta-analysis on maternal testosterone and offspring sex-ratio across birds and mammals.

titre:
Deciding is hard! Interplay between individual phenotype and environmental conditions on mating patterns, timing of reproduction and sex allocation
intervenant:
Thomas Merkling
date:
16 décembre 2019

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