Paternity and paternal care in the swallow, Hirundo rustica

Publication Type:Journal Article
Year of Publication:1988
Journal:Animal Behaviour
Date Published:1988
ISBN Number:0003-3472
Keywords:Hirundinidae, Hirundo, Hirundo rustica
Abstract:Paternal care in the monogamous swallow, Hirundo rustica, measured in terms of frequency of feeding of young, was positively related to the certainty of paternity. Male parental care increased with the absolute number of pair copulations and decreased with the absolute and relative number of extra-pair copulations by his mate. Nearly identical results were obtained using either relative or absolute number of male feedings as a measure of the intensity of parental care. Male swallows apparently estimated their certainty of paternity from the interest that neighbouring males were taking in their mates during the fertile period. When the number of extra-pair copulations involving their mates was experimentally increased, males significantly decreased their feeding rates compared with controls. Paternal care was not related to several measures of male quality (body condition, arrival time, mite infection, song rate, or mate guarding rate).
Short Title:Animal Behaviour
Scratchpads developed and conceived by (alphabetical): Ed Baker, Katherine Bouton Alice Heaton Dimitris Koureas, Laurence Livermore, Dave Roberts, Simon Rycroft, Ben Scott, Vince Smith