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Higher Fitness for Philopatric than for Immigrant Males in a Semi-Isolated Population of Great Reed Warblers

Staffan Bensch, Dennis Hasselquist, Bo Nielsen and Bengt Hansson
Evolution
Vol. 52, No. 3 (Jun., 1998), pp. 877-883
DOI: 10.2307/2411282
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2411282
Page Count: 7
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Higher Fitness for Philopatric than for Immigrant Males in a Semi-Isolated Population of Great Reed Warblers
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Abstract

To compare the fitness of philopatric and immigrant individuals we examined the lifetime reproductive success of 116 male and 137 female great reed warblers. The study was carried out in a semi-isolated population in Sweden and covered breeding adults hatched between 1985 and 1993. Lifetime fitness, measured as life time number of fledglings and offspring recruits, was lower for immigrant than for philopatric males. We found no such relationships for females. The difference in reproductive success could not be explained by immigrant males having lower phenotypic quality because they had similar life span, spring arrival date, and territory quality as philopatric males. The lower lifetime fitness among immigrant than philopatric males appeared to result from reduced mating success. This suggests that females are reluctant to mate with immigrant males despite their apparently similar phenotypic quality. Though it is not known whether females gain in fitness by avoiding matings with immigrant males, it is notable that immigrant males have smaller song repertoires than philopatric males. Large repertoires, previously shown to sexually arouse great reed warbler females, correlate with the occurrence of extrapair paternity and postfledging survival of offspring in our population.

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