Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Record number 536436
Title Maternal Effects in a Wild Songbird Are Environmentally Plastic but Only Marginally Alter the Rate of Adaptation
Author(s) Ramakers, Jip J.C.; Cobben, Marleen M.P.; Bijma, Piter; Reed, Thomas E.; Visser, Marcel E.; Gienapp, Phillip
Source American Naturalist 191 (2018)5. - ISSN 0003-0147 - p. E000 - E000.
DOI https://doi.org/10.1086/696847
Department(s) Animal Breeding and Genetics
WIAS
PE&RC
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2018
Keyword(s) adaptation - environmental shift - evolutionary dynamics - maternal inheritance - plastic maternal effect - quantitative genetics
Abstract Despite ample evidence for the presence of maternal effects (MEs) in a variety of traits and strong theoretical indications for their evolutionary consequences, empirical evidence to what extent MEs can influence evolutionary responses to selection remains ambiguous. We tested the degree to which MEs can alter the rate of adaptation of a key life-history trait, clutch size, using an individual-based model approach parameterized with experimental data from a long-term study of great tits (Parus major). We modeled two types of MEs: (i) an environmentally plastic ME, in which the relationship between maternal and offspring clutch size depended on the maternal environment via offspring condition, and (ii) a fixed ME, in which this relationship was constant. Although both types of ME affected the rate of adaptation following an abrupt environmental shift, the overall effects were small. We conclude that evolutionary consequences of MEs are modest at best in our study system, at least for the trait and the particular type of ME we considered here. A closer link between theoretical and empirical work on MEs would hence be useful to obtain accurate predictions about the evolutionary consequences of MEs more generally.
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