Document Detail

Fitness costs of gestation and lactation in wild mammals.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  2911365     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Like a number of plants, some mammals commonly produce more progeny than they can afford to rear, terminating investment in some or even all of their offspring once the resources available for breeding are known. Adaptive interpretations of juvenile wastage rely on the argument that the costs of gestation are small compared to those of feeding offspring. Though energetic evidence supports this conclusion, it is unsafe to assume that the relative costs of gestation and lactation to the mother's survival and future reproductive success follow the same pattern because lactation commonly coincides with the period of maximum food availability. Controlling for individual variation, we show that in wild red deer (Cervus elaphus L) any costs of gestation to the mother's subsequent survival and reproductive success are slight compared to those of lactation.
T H Clutton-Brock; S D Albon; F E Guinness
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Nature     Volume:  337     ISSN:  0028-0836     ISO Abbreviation:  Nature     Publication Date:  1989 Jan 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  1989-02-21     Completed Date:  1989-02-21     Revised Date:  2006-11-15    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0410462     Medline TA:  Nature     Country:  ENGLAND    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  260-2     Citation Subset:  IM    
Department of Zoology, University of Cambridge, UK.
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MeSH Terms
Animals, Wild / physiology*
Deer / physiology*
Lactation / physiology*
Mammals / physiology
Models, Theoretical
Pregnancy, Animal / physiology*

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