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“Silver-spoon” natal conditions increase early-life fitness but accelerate reproductive ageing in a wild bird
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Biology, Department of Ecology and Genetics, Animal ecology.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-7876-5685
Centre D'Ecologie Fonctionelle & Evolutive.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-9458-709X
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Biology, Department of Ecology and Genetics, Animal ecology.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-6566-2863
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Science and Technology, Biology, Department of Ecology and Genetics, Animal ecology.
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Early-life conditions can have long-lasting effects and organisms that experience a poor start in life are often expected to age at a faster rate. Alternatively, individuals raised in high-quality environments can overinvest in early-reproduction resulting in rapid ageing. Here we use long-term experimental manipulation of early-life conditions in a natural population of collared flycatchers (Ficedula albicollis), to show that females raised in a low-competition environment have higher early-life reproduction but lower late-life reproduction than females raised in high-competition environment. We experimentally created either artificially increased (high-competition) or reduced (low-competition) broods. Reproductive success of high-competition females peaked in late-life, when low-competition females were already in steep reproductive decline and suffered from higher mortality rate. Our results demonstrate that “silver spoon” effects can increase female early-life performance at the cost of faster reproductive ageing and increased late-life mortality. These findings support the evolutionary theory of ageing and show that early-life environmental conditions shape reproductive and demographic ageing in nature.

National Category
Evolutionary Biology
Research subject
Biology with specialization in Animal Ecology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-347831OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-347831DiVA, id: diva2:1195999
Available from: 2018-04-08 Created: 2018-04-08 Last updated: 2018-04-09
In thesis
1. Condition-dependence in life history evolution
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Condition-dependence in life history evolution
2018 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Ageing is the progressive physiological deterioration that appears with increasing age and eventually leads to a decline in survival and reproduction. This physiological process is omnipresent across the tree of life, but the expected trajectory can widely vary between and within species. Classic theories predict that the evolution of senescence is strongly influenced by the level of extrinsic mortality. Furthermore, variation in early-life developmental environments can shape individual condition and thus lead to alternative life-history strategies. The interplay between early-life environment and individual condition might therefore predict the trajectory of ageing and is of importance when studying life history evolution. In this thesis, I focus on condition dependent life-history strategies and how this can translate in differential ageing patterns. Moreover, I specifically investigate the influence of early-life environment on key life history traits (i.e. survival and reproduction) and how this might eventually carry-over to future generations via nongenetic inheritance. First, I used an experimental approach involving lab populations of the nematode Caenorhabditis remanei to show that males, but not females, pay the cost for the evolution of increased lifespan (Paper I). Second, I used an empirical dataset based on 25 years of observations, to investigate the long-term effects of early-life environment on reproduction and survival (Paper II). Reproductive success of low-condition females in natural populations of collared flycatchers (Ficedula albicollis) peaks later in life, when high-condition females are already in steep reproductive decline and suffer from high mortality rates. Third, I used the neriid fly Telostylinus angusticollis in an experimental environment, to test whether condition-dependent investment in secondary sexual traits affects the life-history strategies of males (Paper III). High-condition males developed and aged faster than low-condition males, but interaction with rival males did not affect male reproductive ageing. Finally, continuing the T. angusticollis experiment, I also found that parental diet interacts with parental sex and offspring sex, ultimately affecting offspring life-histories. Parental effects can thus play an important role in shaping between-individual variation in reproductive and actuarial senescence (Paper IV). Overall, in this thesis I have explored the interaction between environment, condition and ageing in both experimental and natural settings.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: Acta Universitatis Upsaliensis, 2018. p. 73
Series
Digital Comprehensive Summaries of Uppsala Dissertations from the Faculty of Science and Technology, ISSN 1651-6214 ; 1662
Keywords
Ageing, senescence, nongenetic inheritance, sex differences, condition-dependence, life history, trade-off, Ficedula albicollis, Caenorhabditis remanei, Telostylinus angusticollis
National Category
Evolutionary Biology
Research subject
Biology with specialization in Animal Ecology
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-347848 (URN)978-91-513-0314-7 (ISBN)
Public defence
2018-05-25, Zootissalen, Villavägen 9, Uppsala, 10:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2018-05-04 Created: 2018-04-09 Last updated: 2018-10-08

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