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Difference in plasticity of resting metabolic rate - the proximate explanation to different niche breadth in sympatric Ficedula flycatchers [Elektronisk resurs]

McFarlane, S. Eryn (författare)
Ålund, Murielle (författare)
Sirkiä, Paivi M. (författare)
Qvarnström, Anna (författare)
Uppsala universitet Teknisk-naturvetenskapliga vetenskapsområdet (utgivare)
Publicerad: 2018
Engelska.
Ingår i: Ecology and Evolution. - 2045-7758. ; 8:9, 4575-4586
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  • Variation in relative fitness of competing recently formed species across heterogeneous environments promotes coexistence. However, the physiological traits mediating such variation in relative fitness have rarely been identified. Resting metabolic rate (RMR) is tightly associated with life history strategies, thermoregulation, diet use, and inhabited latitude and could therefore moderate differences in fitness responses to fluctuations in local environments, particularly when species have adapted to different climates in allopatry. We work in a long‐term study of collared ( Ficedula albicollis) and pied flycatchers ( Ficedula hypoleuca ) in a recent hybrid zone located on the Swedish island of Öland in the Baltic Sea. Here, we explore whether differences in RMR match changes in relative performance of growing flycatcher nestlings across environmental conditions using an experimental approach. The fitness of pied flycatchers has previously been shown to be less sensitive to the mismatch between the peak in food abundance and nestling growth among late breeders. Here, we find that pied flycatcher nestlings have lower RMR in response to higher ambient temperatures (associated with low food availability). We also find that experimentally relaxed nestling competition is associated with an increased RMR in this species. In contrast, collared flycatcher nestlings did not vary their RMR in response to these environmental factors. Our results suggest that a more flexible nestling RMR in pied flycatchers is responsible for the better adaptation of pied flycatchers to the typical seasonal changes in food availability experienced in this hybrid zone. Generally, subtle physiological differences that have evolved when species were in allopatry may play an important role to patterns of competition, coexistence, or displacements between closely related species in secondary contact. 

Ämnesord

Natural Sciences  (hsv)
Biological Sciences  (hsv)
Zoology  (hsv)
Naturvetenskap  (hsv)
Biologiska vetenskaper  (hsv)
Zoologi  (hsv)

Indexterm och SAB-rubrik

cross-fostering
Ficedula flycatchers
plasticity
resting metabolic rate
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