Document Detail

Short- and long-term consequences of early developmental conditions: a case study on wild and domesticated zebra finches.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  19196386     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
Divergent selection pressures among populations can result not only in significant differentiation in morphology, physiology and behaviour, but also in how these traits are related to each other, thereby driving the processes of local adaptation and speciation. In the Australian zebra finch, we investigated whether domesticated stock, bred in captivity over tens of generations, differ in their response to a life-history manipulation, compared to birds taken directly from the wild. In a 'common aviary' experiment, we thereto experimentally manipulated the environmental conditions experienced by nestlings early in life by means of a brood size manipulation, and subsequently assessed its short- and long-term consequences on growth, ornamentation, immune function and reproduction. As expected, we found that early environmental conditions had a marked effect on both short- and long-term morphological and life-history traits in all birds. However, although there were pronounced differences between wild and domesticated birds with respect to the absolute expression of many of these traits, which are indicative of the different selection pressures wild and domesticated birds were exposed to in the recent past, manipulated rearing conditions affected morphology and ornamentation of wild and domesticated finches in a very similar way. This suggests that despite significant differentiation between wild and domesticated birds, selection has not altered the relationships among traits. Thus, life-history strategies and investment trade-offs may be relatively stable and not easily altered by selection. This is a reassuring finding in the light of the widespread use of domesticated birds in studies of life-history evolution and sexual selection, and suggests that adaptive explanations may be legitimate when referring to captive bird studies.
B Tschirren; A N Rutstein; E Postma; M Mariette; S C Griffith
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Journal of evolutionary biology     Volume:  22     ISSN:  1420-9101     ISO Abbreviation:  J. Evol. Biol.     Publication Date:  2009 Feb 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2009-02-06     Completed Date:  2009-02-12     Revised Date:  -    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8809954     Medline TA:  J Evol Biol     Country:  Switzerland    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  387-95     Citation Subset:  IM    
Centre for the Integrative Study of Animal Behaviour, Macquarie University, Sydney, NSW, Australia.
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MeSH Terms
Animal Communication
Beak / physiology
Clutch Size / physiology
Finches / growth & development,  immunology,  physiology*
Time Factors
Zygote / physiology

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