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Multiple Paternity in a Wild Population of Mallards

Susan Evarts and Christopher J. Williams
The Auk
Vol. 104, No. 4 (Oct., 1987), pp. 597-602
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/4087269
Page Count: 6
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Multiple Paternity in a Wild Population of Mallards
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Abstract

Blood, heart, liver, and breast muscle samples from wild Mallard (Anas platyrhynchos) hens and their ducklings were analyzed using starch-gel electrophoresis. We found that 17.4% of the total broods sampled (n = 46) involved observable multiple mating events, that 25.8% of the sample broods involved multiple mating events when broods that were unlikely to yield information on multiple paternity were excluded (n = 31), and that a pooled maximum-likelihood estimate indicated a 60% chance that a particular duckling came from a brood that was multiply fathered, or at least 48% of broods involved multiple mating events.

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