A trade-off between reproduction and a condition-dependent sexually selected ornament in the house sparrow Passer domesticus

Simon C. Griffith*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

84 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Reproductive effort was manipulated in a free-living population of house sparrows (Passer domesticus) to investigate the trade-off between reproductive investment and the expression of a condition-dependent sexually selected ornament. Phenotypic plasticity in the expression of this trait was related to the experimentally manipulated size of the brood reared by a male. Males that invested more in current reproduction subsequently became more attractive to females in this population as they showed a preference for males with smaller badges. This supports the argument that direct benefits are a primary focus for mate choice by females. Trade-offs between reproductive effort and the expression of sexual ornaments are a potentially important source of phenotypic variation in both sexual ornaments and life-history traits.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1115-1119
Number of pages5
JournalProceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
Volume267
Issue number1448
Publication statusPublished - 7 Jun 2000
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Life history
  • Ornament expression
  • Rendition dependence
  • Sexual selection
  • Trade-offs

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