, Volume 49, Issue 2, pp 158–166 | Cite as

Genetic variation in the timing of reproduction in the Great Tit

  • A. J. van Noordwijk
  • J. H. van Balen
  • W. Scharloo


About 40% of the population variation in the initiation dates of first clutches within years is genetically determined. The onset of laying, which is determined by the female, is not detectably influenced by spatial heterogeneity of the study area.

There is a variable selection favoring early, middle, or late laying in some years. Over the study period as a whole there is a slight net selection for laying relatively late.

The implications for a potential rapid evolutionary change are discussed. The conclusion is reached that the population mean might change with rates of up to one week per five generations, which is approximately a decade.


Genetic Variation Variable Selection Spatial Heterogeneity Population Variation Evolutionary Change 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 1981

Authors and Affiliations

  • A. J. van Noordwijk
    • 1
    • 2
  • J. H. van Balen
    • 2
  • W. Scharloo
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Population and Evolutionary BiologyUniversity of UtrechtUtrechtThe Netherlands
  2. 2.Institute for Ecological ResearchArnhemThe Netherlands

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