Nicole M. Gerlach

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In many species, each female pairs with a single male for the purpose of rearing offspring, but may also engage in extra-pair copulations. Despite the prevalence of such promiscuity, whether and how multiple mating benefits females remains an open question. Multiple mating is typically thought to be favoured primarily through indirect benefits (i.e.(More)
Because of their role in mediating life-history trade-offs, hormones are expected to be strongly associated with components of fitness; however, few studies have examined how natural selection acts on hormonal variation in the wild. In a songbird, the dark-eyed junco (Junco hyemalis), field experiments have shown that exogenous testosterone alters(More)
Testosterone (T) is often referred to as the "male hormone," but it can influence aggression, parental behavior, and immune function in both males and females. By experimentally relating hormone-induced changes in phenotype to fitness, it is possible to ask whether existing phenotypes perform better or worse than alternative phenotypes, and hence to predict(More)
Songbird preen oil contains volatile and semivolatile compounds that may contain information about species, sex, individual identity, and season. We examined the relationship between testosterone (T) and the amounts of preen oil volatile and semivolatile compounds in wild and captive dark-eyed juncos (Junco hyemalis). In wild males and females, we observed(More)
Bateman's principle, which states that male reproductive success should increase with multiple mating, whereas female reproductive success should not, has long been used to explain sex differences in behavior. The statistical relationship between mating success and reproductive success, or Bateman gradient, has been proposed as a way to quantify sex(More)
Keywords: chemical communication dark-eyed junco honest signal Junco hyemalis mate assessment mate choice preen oil sexual signalling uropygial gland Although the importance of chemical communication in birds has long been overlooked or doubted, volatile compounds in avian preen secretions have been shown to covary with traits including species, sex and(More)
Patterns of sex-biased dispersal (SBD) are typically consistent within taxa, for example female-biased in birds and male-biased in mammals, leading to theories about the evolutionary pressures that lead to SBD. However, generalizations about the evolution of sex biases tend to overlook that dispersal is mediated by ecological factors that vary over time. We(More)
Chemical signaling is an underappreciated means of communication among birds, as may be the potential contributions of symbiotic microbes to animal chemical communication in general. The dark-eyed junco (Junco hyemalis) produces and detects volatile compounds that may be important in reproductive behavior. These compounds are found in preen oil secreted by(More)
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