, Volume 186, Issue 3, pp 665–675 | Cite as

Hoopoe males experience intra-seasonal while females experience inter-seasonal reproductive costs

  • Floriane PlardEmail author
  • Raphaël Arlettaz
  • Michael Schaub
Population ecology – original research


Reproductive and survival costs due to reproductive investment are a central element for the evolution of life histories. Both intra- (reduction of reproductive performance of second brood due to investment in first brood) and inter-seasonal costs (reduction of reproductive performance or annual survival due to reproductive investment in preceding year) may appear in multiple breeding species. Knowledge about how trade-offs within and between seasons shape individual trajectories and influence fitness are crucial in life-history evolution, yet intra- and inter-seasonal reproductive costs are rarely analysed simultaneously. We investigated sex-specific differences in intra- and inter-seasonal reproductive and survival costs in response to previous reproductive effort in a monogamous, double-brooding bird, the hoopoe (Upupa epops), accounting for heterogeneity in individual and annual quality. Intra-seasonal reproductive costs were detected in males and inter-seasonal reproductive and survival costs were detected in females. In males, the probability of being a successful double breeder was negatively correlated with the number of hatchlings produced in the first brood. In females, the number of fledglings raised in the first brood was negatively correlated with the reproductive effort in the preceding season. Female annual survival was also negatively influenced by the number of broods produced in the previous reproductive season. Most of these reproductive costs were detected only in years with low productivity, suggesting that costs become evident when environmental conditions are harsh. Our results illustrate how different investment in current vs. future reproduction and survival shape different life-history strategies in males and females of a monogamous bird species.


Double-breeding Environmental conditions Individual quality Trade-off Upupa epops 



We are grateful to all the people that have been involved in data collection since the beginning of the study.

Author contribution statement

FP and MS designed the study. FP carried out the analysis and wrote the manuscript. RA and MS provided the data and helped commenting the manuscript. All authors gave final approval for publication.

Compliance with ethical standards

Data accessibility

Data would be made available conditional of the acceptance of the paper.

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Supplementary material

442_2017_4028_MOESM1_ESM.pdf (180 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (PDF 181 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Floriane Plard
    • 1
    Email author
  • Raphaël Arlettaz
    • 2
    • 3
  • Michael Schaub
    • 1
  1. 1.Swiss Ornithological InstituteSempachSwitzerland
  2. 2.Division of Conservation Biology, Institute of Ecology and EvolutionUniversity of BernBernSwitzerland
  3. 3.Swiss Ornithological InstituteSionSwitzerland

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