Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology

, Volume 37, Issue 3, pp 163–168 | Cite as

Evidence of kin-selected tolerance by nestlings in a siblicidal bird

  • D. J. Anderson
  • R. E. Ricklefs
Article

Abstract

Behaviorally dominant members of blue-footed booby (Sula nebouxii) broods can effect siblicide by restricting access of subordinate siblings to parents providing food. In spite of their capacity for siblicide, dominant chicks permit subordinates to feed during short-term food shortage; in fact, the proportion of the food that the dominant takes is independent of the total amount delivered in older chicks. A model of optimal food distribution suggests that dominant chicks maximize their inclusive fitness with this pattern, rather than by satisfying their own food requirements and leaving what remains for the subordinate sibling. The indirect reproductive potential represented by a chick's sibling appears to have influenced the evolution of siblicidal brood reduction in this species.

Key words

Siblicide Kin selection Gálapagos Islands Blue-footed booby Sula nebouxii 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. Anderson DJ (1989a) The role of hatching asynchrony in siblicidal brood reduction of two booby species. Behav Ecol Sociobiol 25:363–368Google Scholar
  2. Anderson DJ (1989b) Differential responses of boobies and other seabirds in the Galápagos to the 1986–87 El Niño-Southern Oscillation event. Mar Ecol Prog Ser 52:209–216Google Scholar
  3. Anderson DJ (1989c) Ecology and behavior of siblicide in masked and blue-footed boobies (Sula spp). Ph.D. dissertation, University of Pennsylvania, PhiladelphiaGoogle Scholar
  4. Anderson DJ (1990a) Evolution of obligate siblicide in boobies. 1. A test of the insurance egg hypothesis. Am Nat 135:334–350Google Scholar
  5. Anderson DJ (1990b) Evolution of obligate siblicide in boobies.2. Food limitation and parent-offspring conflict. Evolution 44:2069–2082Google Scholar
  6. Anderson DJ, Ricklefs RE (1987) Radio-tracking masked and blue-footed boobies in the Galapagos Islands. Nat Geog Res 3:152–163Google Scholar
  7. Anderson DJ, Ricklefs RE (1992) Brood size and food provisioning in masked and blue-footed boobies (Sula spp.). Ecology 73:1363–1374Google Scholar
  8. Brown JL (1987) Helping and communal breeding in birds. Princeton University Press, PrincetonGoogle Scholar
  9. Cash KJ, Evans RM (1986) Brood reduction in the American white pelican (Pelecanus erythrorhynchos). Behav Ecol Sociobiol 18:413–418Google Scholar
  10. Clark AB, Wilson DS (1981) Avian breeding adaptations: hatching asynchrony, brood reduction, and nest failure. Q Rev Biol 56:253–277Google Scholar
  11. Dawkins R (1976) The selfish gene. Oxford University Press, OxfordGoogle Scholar
  12. Drummond H (1987) A review of parent-offspring conflict and brood reduction in the Pelecaniformes. Colon Waterbirds 10:1–15Google Scholar
  13. Drummond H, Gonzalez E, Osorno J-L (1986) Parent-offspring cooperation in the blue-footed booby (Sula nebouxii): social roles in infanticidal brood reduction. Behav Ecol Sociobiol 19:365–372Google Scholar
  14. Drummond H, Garcia Chavelas C (1989) Food shortage influences sibling aggression in the blue-footed booby. Anim Behav 37:806–819Google Scholar
  15. Forbes LS (1990) Insurance offspring and the evolution of avian clutch size. J Theor Biol 147:345–359Google Scholar
  16. Forbes LS (1993) Avian brood reduction and parent-offspring “conflict”. Am Nat 142:82–117Google Scholar
  17. Hahn DC (1981). Asynchronous hatching in the laughing gull: cutting losses and reducing rivalry. Anim Behav 29:421–427Google Scholar
  18. Hamilton WD (1964) The genetical theory of social behaviour: I, II. J Theor Biol 7:1–52Google Scholar
  19. Hussell DJT (1972) Factors affecting clutch size in Arctic passerines. Ecol Monogr 42:317–364Google Scholar
  20. Hussell DJT (1985) On the adaptive basis for hatching asynchrony: brood reduction, nest failure and asynchronous hatching in snow buntings. Ornis Scand 16:205–212Google Scholar
  21. Lack D (1954) The natural regulation of animal numbers. Clarendon, OxfordGoogle Scholar
  22. Lack D (1968) Ecological adaptations for breeding in birds. Chapman and Hall, LondonGoogle Scholar
  23. Magrath RD (1988) Hatching asynchrony in altricial birds: nest failure and adult survivorship. Am Nat 131:893–900Google Scholar
  24. Mangel M, Clark CW (1988) Dynamic modelling in behavioral ecology. Princeton University Press, PrincetonGoogle Scholar
  25. McGinley MA, Temme DH, Geber MA (1987) Parental investment in offspring in variable environments: theoretical and empirical considerations. Am Nat 130:370–398Google Scholar
  26. Mock DW (1984) Infanticide, siblicide, and avian nesting mortality. In: Hausfater G, Hrdy SB (eds), Infanticide: comparative and evolutionary perspectives. Aldine, New York, pp 3–30Google Scholar
  27. Mock DW, Drummond H, Stinson CH (1990) Avian Sibilicide. Am Sci 78:438–449Google Scholar
  28. Nelson JB (1978) The Sulidae. Oxford University Press, OxfordGoogle Scholar
  29. O'Connor RJ (1978) Brood reduction in birds: selection for infanticide, fratricide, and suicide? Anim Behav 26:79–96Google Scholar
  30. Parker GA, Mock DW, Lamey TC (1989) How selfish should stronger sibs be? Am Nat 133:846–868Google Scholar
  31. Ricklefs RE (1984) Meal sizes and feeding rates of Christmas shearwaters and Phoenix petrels on Christmas Island, central Pacific Ocean. Ornis Scand 15:16–22Google Scholar
  32. Smith CC, Fretwell SD (1974) The optimal balance between size and number of offspring. Am Nat 108:499–506Google Scholar
  33. Trivers RL (1974) Parent-offspring conflict. Am Zool 14:249–264Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1995

Authors and Affiliations

  • D. J. Anderson
    • 1
  • R. E. Ricklefs
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of BiologyWake Forest UniversityWinstonSalemUSA
  2. 2.Department of Biology, Leidy LaboratoryUniversity of PennsylvaniaPhiladelphiaUSA

Personalised recommendations