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Biparental care and offspring begging strategies : hungry nestling blue tits move towards the father.

Dickens, M. and Berridge, D. and Hartley, Ian R. (2008) Biparental care and offspring begging strategies : hungry nestling blue tits move towards the father. Animal Behaviour, 75 (1). pp. 167-174. ISSN 0003-3472

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Despite the fact that in many bird species offspring are provisioned by two parents, few studies to date have examined the implications of biparental care for offspring solicitation behaviour. Male and female parents can differ in their potential value to individual offspring if they follow different allocation rules and/or have different provisioning rates. If such differences occur, offspring should use different rules when soliciting to the male and female parent. This study looked at how the begging behaviour of nestling blue tits, Cyanistes caeruleus, is influenced by their hunger, size and by the sex of the provisioning adult. Nestling hunger was manipulated across size ranks, using periods of hand feeding or food deprivation. While nestling hunger influenced all aspects of nestling begging behaviour, nestling size and the sex of the provisioning adult only affected the position of nestlings in the nest cup. When hungry, nestlings moved closer to the male parent and the largest nestlings in a brood primarily obtained the closest positions. This may be the result of offspring responding to a difference between the sexes in parental food allocation rules.

Item Type: Article
Journal or Publication Title: Animal Behaviour
Uncontrolled Keywords: begging ; biparental care ; blue tit ; Cyanistes caeruleus ; parent–offspring conflict ; sibling conflict ; sibling competition
Subjects: Q Science > QH Natural history > QH301 Biology
ID Code: 9143
Deposited By: Dr Ian R Hartley
Deposited On: 28 May 2008 13:48
Refereed?: Yes
Published?: Published
Last Modified: 23 Jul 2014 14:53
Identification Number:

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