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Effects of extreme weather on reproductive success in a temperate-breeding songbird.

Pipoly I, Bókony V, Seress G, Szabó K, Liker A - PLoS ONE (2013)

Bottom Line: We found that hatching success increased with the number of extremely hot days (daily maximum >31°C) and decreased with the number of extremely cold days (<16°C) during incubation, although the latter effect held only for clutches with relatively short incubation periods.Male to female ratio among fledglings did not differ from 1:1 and did not vary with weather variables.The magnitude of the effects of extreme meteorological events was usually small, although in some cases comparable to those of ecologically relevant predictors of reproductive success.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Limnology, University of Pannonia, Veszprém, Hungary.

ABSTRACT
The frequency of extreme meteorological events such as heat waves and rainstorms is predicted to increase with climate change. However, there is still little information about how extreme weather influences reproduction in animals. It may not only affect breeding success but might also alter offspring sex ratio if males and females are differentially sensitive to meteorological conditions during development. We investigated the relationship between meteorological conditions and reproductive success over 6 years in a house sparrow population in central Europe. We found that hatching success increased with the number of extremely hot days (daily maximum >31°C) and decreased with the number of extremely cold days (<16°C) during incubation, although the latter effect held only for clutches with relatively short incubation periods. Fledging success was unrelated to weather variables. However, the frequency of extremely hot days had a negative effect on fledglings' body mass and tarsus length, although both of these traits were positively related to average temperature. Additionally, fledglings' body mass increased with the length of period without rainfall before fledging. Male to female ratio among fledglings did not differ from 1:1 and did not vary with weather variables. The magnitude of the effects of extreme meteorological events was usually small, although in some cases comparable to those of ecologically relevant predictors of reproductive success. Our results indicate that meteorological conditions have complex effects on breeding success, as the effects of extreme weather can differ between different aspects of reproduction and also from the effects of overall meteorological conditions.

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Model structure in SEM analyses.Thin lines stand for effects included in all models, thick lines for relationships that varied within model sets, dashed lines for paths contained only in the model set of hatching success, and the dotted line for the effect of brood size in model sets of nestlings’ body mass and tarsus length.
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pone-0080033-g001: Model structure in SEM analyses.Thin lines stand for effects included in all models, thick lines for relationships that varied within model sets, dashed lines for paths contained only in the model set of hatching success, and the dotted line for the effect of brood size in model sets of nestlings’ body mass and tarsus length.

Mentions: We used structural equation modelling (SEM) to investigate the correlations between reproductive success and weather conditions. SEM is a multivariate statistical method particularly useful for decomposing the covariation within complex sets of multi-colinear variables [40,41]. We fitted structural equation models by the method of maximum likelihood using AMOS 20.0 [42]. Because the error distribution of our data was not normal, the 95% confidence intervals of path coefficients were estimated by bootstraping, with 9000 bootstrap samples for each model [41]. For each of the five measures of reproductive success (dependent variables), we constructed a set of nested a priori models (Tables S2, S3, S4, S5, S6). In each model set, the full model estimated reproductive success as function of both the two overall and four extreme meteorological variables (Figure 1). Further candidate models contained various plausible combinations of these six weather variables and a „ model” with no weather effects (Table S2, S3, S4, S5, S6).


Effects of extreme weather on reproductive success in a temperate-breeding songbird.

Pipoly I, Bókony V, Seress G, Szabó K, Liker A - PLoS ONE (2013)

Model structure in SEM analyses.Thin lines stand for effects included in all models, thick lines for relationships that varied within model sets, dashed lines for paths contained only in the model set of hatching success, and the dotted line for the effect of brood size in model sets of nestlings’ body mass and tarsus length.
© Copyright Policy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC3818280&req=5

pone-0080033-g001: Model structure in SEM analyses.Thin lines stand for effects included in all models, thick lines for relationships that varied within model sets, dashed lines for paths contained only in the model set of hatching success, and the dotted line for the effect of brood size in model sets of nestlings’ body mass and tarsus length.
Mentions: We used structural equation modelling (SEM) to investigate the correlations between reproductive success and weather conditions. SEM is a multivariate statistical method particularly useful for decomposing the covariation within complex sets of multi-colinear variables [40,41]. We fitted structural equation models by the method of maximum likelihood using AMOS 20.0 [42]. Because the error distribution of our data was not normal, the 95% confidence intervals of path coefficients were estimated by bootstraping, with 9000 bootstrap samples for each model [41]. For each of the five measures of reproductive success (dependent variables), we constructed a set of nested a priori models (Tables S2, S3, S4, S5, S6). In each model set, the full model estimated reproductive success as function of both the two overall and four extreme meteorological variables (Figure 1). Further candidate models contained various plausible combinations of these six weather variables and a „ model” with no weather effects (Table S2, S3, S4, S5, S6).

Bottom Line: We found that hatching success increased with the number of extremely hot days (daily maximum >31°C) and decreased with the number of extremely cold days (<16°C) during incubation, although the latter effect held only for clutches with relatively short incubation periods.Male to female ratio among fledglings did not differ from 1:1 and did not vary with weather variables.The magnitude of the effects of extreme meteorological events was usually small, although in some cases comparable to those of ecologically relevant predictors of reproductive success.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Limnology, University of Pannonia, Veszprém, Hungary.

ABSTRACT
The frequency of extreme meteorological events such as heat waves and rainstorms is predicted to increase with climate change. However, there is still little information about how extreme weather influences reproduction in animals. It may not only affect breeding success but might also alter offspring sex ratio if males and females are differentially sensitive to meteorological conditions during development. We investigated the relationship between meteorological conditions and reproductive success over 6 years in a house sparrow population in central Europe. We found that hatching success increased with the number of extremely hot days (daily maximum >31°C) and decreased with the number of extremely cold days (<16°C) during incubation, although the latter effect held only for clutches with relatively short incubation periods. Fledging success was unrelated to weather variables. However, the frequency of extremely hot days had a negative effect on fledglings' body mass and tarsus length, although both of these traits were positively related to average temperature. Additionally, fledglings' body mass increased with the length of period without rainfall before fledging. Male to female ratio among fledglings did not differ from 1:1 and did not vary with weather variables. The magnitude of the effects of extreme meteorological events was usually small, although in some cases comparable to those of ecologically relevant predictors of reproductive success. Our results indicate that meteorological conditions have complex effects on breeding success, as the effects of extreme weather can differ between different aspects of reproduction and also from the effects of overall meteorological conditions.

Show MeSH
Related in: MedlinePlus