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      Natural 'poor start' does not increase mortality over the lifetime.

      1 , ,
      Proceedings. Biological sciences
      The Royal Society

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          Abstract

          Poor nutrition and other challenges during infancy can impose delayed costs, and it has been proposed that expression of costs during adulthood should involve increased mortality rather than reduced reproduction. Demonstrations of delayed costs come mostly from experimental manipulations of the diet and hormones of captive infants of short-lived species, and we know very little about how natural poor starts in life affect wild animals over their lifetimes. In the blue-footed booby, sibling conflict obliges younger brood members to grow up suffering aggressive subordination, food deprivation and elevated stress hormone, but surviving fledglings showed no deficit in reproduction over the first 5-10 years. A study of 7927 individuals from two-fledgling and singleton broods from 20 cohorts found no significant evidence of a higher rate of mortality nor a lower rate of recruitment in younger fledglings than in elder fledglings or singletons at any age over the 20 year lifespan. Development of boobies may be buffered against the three challenges of subordination. Experimental challenges to neonates that result in delayed costs have usually been more severe, more prolonged and more abruptly suspended, and it is unclear which natural situations they mimic.

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          Author and article information

          Journal
          Proc. Biol. Sci.
          Proceedings. Biological sciences
          The Royal Society
          1471-2954
          0962-8452
          Nov 22 2011
          : 278
          : 1723
          Affiliations
          [1 ] Departamento de Ecología Evolutiva, Instituto de Ecología, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, A.P. 70-275, México 04510 DF, Mexico. hugh@servidor.unam.mx
          Article
          rspb.2010.2569
          10.1098/rspb.2010.2569
          3177622
          21450729
          6d741ef3-39fa-48e1-b4b9-2af0a1ace853
          History

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