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Age-related reproductive success in the barnacle goose
Uppsala University, Sweden.
Uppsala University, Sweden.ORCID iD: 0000-0003-2737-4208
1992 (English)In: Journal of Animal Ecology, ISSN 0021-8790, E-ISSN 1365-2656, Vol. 61, p. 195-204Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

1. We studied age-related reproductive success in a recently established breeding colony of barnacle goose Branta leucopsis on the island of Gotland, Sweden.

2. Associations of age and breeding experience with several reproductive parameters were investigated by comparing the success of individuals of 2, 3, 4 and >=5 years of age. Also, we measured the within-individual changes in reproductive parameters as the individuals grew older.

3. Associations between survival and reproductive success were investigated by comparing the reproductive success of 2, 3 and 4-year-old birds that returned or did not return, respectively, in the subsequent breeding season.

4. The reproductive success increased up to an age of 4-5 years. Thus, clutch size, number of hatched young and number of fledged young increased, and hatching date was advanced with increasing age. This was due to the fact that individuals increased in reproductive success as they grew older.

5. A possibly higher probability of survival among individuals that perform well in reproduction could not explain the higher reproductive success in older age-classes as compared to young age-classes of geese, because there were no associations between survival and reproductive success, and very few individuals did actually disappear between any two breeding seasons.

6. Path analysis suggested age effects only at earlier stages of reproduction, i. e. timing of breeding and clutch size. These characters, in turn, were associated with number of fledged young. These findings were further supported by measurements of hatching success and rearing success, which did not seem to increase with age.

7. Increased breeding experience was associated with early hatching date and larger clutch size in males, and with larger clutch size in females. This was concluded from path analysis and from comparisons of individuals of the same age but with different breeding experience.

8. The increase in reproductive success with age in the barnacle goose is probably a result of age-related skills in individuals and the direct effects of these skills on reproductive success, but possibly also because of increased reproductive effort with age owing to these age-related skills.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
British Ecological Society, 1992. Vol. 61, p. 195-204
Keywords [en]
barnacle goose, age, breeding experience, reproductive success, reproductive effort
National Category
Ecology
Research subject
Natural Science
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:lnu:diva-33032DOI: 10.2307/5522OAI: oai:DiVA.org:lnu-33032DiVA, id: diva2:706128
Available from: 2014-03-19 Created: 2014-03-19 Last updated: 2019-02-27Bibliographically approved

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Larsson, Kjell

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