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Sex-dependent selection often leads to spectacularly different phenotypes in males and females. In species in which sexual dimorphism is not complete, it is unclear which benefits females and males derive from displaying a trait that is typical of the other sex. In barn owls (Tyto alba), females exhibit on average larger black eumelanic spots than males but(More)
Understanding population dynamics requires accurate estimates of demographic rates. Integrated population models combine demographic and survey data into a single, comprehensive analysis and provide more coherent estimates of vital rates. Integrated population models rely on the assumption that different data sets are independent, which is frequently(More)
Theory predicts that temporal variability plays an important role in the evolution of life histories, but empirical studies evaluating this prediction are rare. In constant environments, fitness can be measured by the population growth rate lambda, and the sensitivity of lambda to changes in fitness components estimates selection on these traits. In(More)
Understanding the factors that drive population dynamics is fundamental to species conservation and management. Since the golden-cheeked warbler Setophaga chrysoparia was first listed as endangered, much effort has taken place to monitor warbler abundance, occupancy, reproduction and survival. Yet, despite being directly related to local population(More)
Since 1899 ringing (or banding) remained the most important source of information about migration routes, stopover sites and wintering grounds for birds that are too small to carry satellite-based tracking systems. Despite the large quantity of migrating birds ringed in their breeding areas in Europe, the number of ring recoveries from sub-Saharan Africa is(More)
Conceived to combat widescale biodiversity erosion in farmland, agri-environment schemes have largely failed to deliver their promises despite massive financial support. While several common species have shown to react positively to existing measures, rare species have continued to decline in most European countries. Of particular concern is the status of(More)
Performance in one stage of a complex life cycle may affect performance in the subsequent stage. Animals that start a new stage at a smaller size than conspecifics may either always remain smaller or they may be able to "catch up" through plasticity, usually elevated growth rates. We study how size at and date of metamorphosis affected subsequent(More)
The exchange of individuals among populations can have strong effects on the dynamics and persistence of a given population. Yet, estimation of immigration rates remains one of the greatest challenges for animal demographers. Little empirical knowledge exists about the effects of immigration on population dynamics. New integrated population models fitted(More)
BACKGROUND Understanding the demographic processes underlying population dynamics is a central theme in ecology. Populations decline if losses from the population (i.e., mortality and emigration) exceed gains (i.e., recruitment and immigration). Amphibians are thought to exhibit little movement even though local populations often fluctuate dramatically and(More)
Reproducing parents face the difficult challenge of trading-off investment in current reproduction against presumed future survival and reproduction. Glucocorticoids are supposed to mediate this trade-off because the adrenocortical response to stress disrupts normal reproductive behaviour in favour of self-maintenance and own survival. According to the(More)