Skip navigation
Skip navigation

The role of pigment based plumage traits in resolving conflicts

Young, Catherine Mary; Cain, Kristal Elaine; Svedin, Nina; Backwell, Patricia; Pryke, Sarah Rosalind

Description

The role of melanin ‘badges of status’, in male–male competition has been well-studied, in contrast, carotenoid based plumage has largely been examined in the context of female mate choice. Recent work has shown that carotenoid signals can also function in male–male competition, although the functions of the two types of signals is currently unclear. Here, we examine the relationships between colouration, dominance and aggression in the crimson finch Neochmia phaeton, a species where males have...[Show more]

dc.contributor.authorYoung, Catherine Mary
dc.contributor.authorCain, Kristal Elaine
dc.contributor.authorSvedin, Nina
dc.contributor.authorBackwell, Patricia
dc.contributor.authorPryke, Sarah Rosalind
dc.date.accessioned2016-12-14T05:36:39Z
dc.date.available2016-12-14T05:36:39Z
dc.identifier.issn0908-8857
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/1885/111399
dc.description.abstractThe role of melanin ‘badges of status’, in male–male competition has been well-studied, in contrast, carotenoid based plumage has largely been examined in the context of female mate choice. Recent work has shown that carotenoid signals can also function in male–male competition, although the functions of the two types of signals is currently unclear. Here, we examine the relationships between colouration, dominance and aggression in the crimson finch Neochmia phaeton, a species where males have both conspicuous red carotenoid plumage and a black melanin patch. We examined the impor-tance of carotenoid and melanin based signals in three contexts: 1) among free-living birds interacting at a feeding station: we found that neither colour signal influenced the outcome of interactions; 2) in staged dyadic contest in captivity: we found that coloration from carotenoid pigments was positively related to the probability of winning a contest, while the size of the melanin plumage patch was not related to winning; and 3) in staged dyadic contests where male plumage colour had been masked: we found that the number of interactions required to determine dominance increased. While the underlying natural plumage colour was still important in these contests, birds with more intense carotenoid colouration were now more likely to lose. ese results confirm carotenoid-based signalling in male–male contests. However this signal is used in conjunction with other factors such as self-assessment and body condition. Contrary to traditional expectations, the black melanin patch was not found to be important in this context.
dc.description.sponsorshipThis work was supported by Australian Research Council Grants (SRP) and an A.N.U. PhD scholarship (CMY).
dc.format.mimetypeapplication/pdf
dc.publisherWiley
dc.rights© 2015 The Authors. Journal of Avian Biology © 2015 Nordic Society Oikos
dc.sourceJournal of Avian Biology
dc.titleThe role of pigment based plumage traits in resolving conflicts
dc.typeJournal article
local.identifier.citationvolume47
dc.date.issued2016
local.publisher.urlhttp://au.wiley.com/WileyCDA/
local.type.statusPublished Version
local.contributor.affiliationYoung, C. M., Research School of Biology, The Australian National University
local.contributor.affiliationCain, K. E., Research School of Biology, The Australian National University
local.contributor.affiliationSvedin, N., Research School of Biology, The Australian National University
local.contributor.affiliationBackwell, P. R. Y., Research School of Biology, The Australian National University
local.contributor.affiliationPryke, S. R., Research School of Biology, The Australian National University
local.bibliographicCitation.issue2
local.bibliographicCitation.startpage167
local.bibliographicCitation.lastpage175
local.identifier.doi10.1111/jav.00742
dcterms.accessRightsOpen Access
CollectionsANU Research Publications

Download

There are no files associated with this item.


Items in Open Research are protected by copyright, with all rights reserved, unless otherwise indicated.

Updated:  19 May 2020/ Responsible Officer:  University Librarian/ Page Contact:  Library Systems & Web Coordinator