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abstract: Coevolution is evolution in one species in response to selection imposed by a second species, followed by evolution in the second species in response to reciprocal selection imposed by the first species. Although reciprocal selection is a prerequisite of coevolution, it has seldom been documented in natural populations. We examined the feasibility(More)
Sex ratios in clutches of moorhens (Gallinula chloropus) in Britain were measured on 83 chicks using the sex-linked CHD1 gene (Chromo-helicase/ATPase-DNA binding protein 1). Among birds, the female is the heterogametic sex (Z and W chromosomes), and the male is homogametic (two copies of the Z chromosome). We report variation among the PCR-amplified(More)
The evolutionary history of the dodo is very poorly understood. Like many avian island en-demics, a high degree of morphological change associated with flightlessness and gigantism has obscured phylogenetic relationships, and historically the dodo has been linked with avian groups ranging from the ratites to the raptors (1). Since the mid-1800s,(More)
Understanding and resolving conflicts between phenotypic and genetic differentiation is central to evolutionary research. While phenotypically monomorphic species may exhibit deep genetic divergences, some morphologically distinct taxa lack notable genetic differentiation. Here we conduct a molecular investigation of an enigmatic shorebird with a convoluted(More)
We have identified 15 polymorphic microsatellite loci for the barn owl (Tyto alba), five from testing published owl loci and 10 from testing non-owl loci, including loci known to be of high utility in passerines and shorebirds. All 15 loci were sequenced in barn owl, and new primer sets were designed for eight loci. The 15 polymorphic loci displayed two to(More)
Snakes introduced to islands can be devastating to naïve native fauna. However, introduced populations must establish before range expansion (invasion) can occur. The factors that can determine successful invasion are those associated with the introduction event (e.g., characteristics of the founding population), the location (e.g., suitable environment and(More)
The female perspective on reproductive strategies remains one of the most active areas of debate in biology. Even though a single mating is often sufficient to satisfy the fertilization needs of most females and the act of further mating incurs costs, multiple paternity within broods or clutches is a common observation in nature. Direct or indirect(More)
We present two new avian molecular sexing techniques for nonpasserine and passerine birds (Neognathae), which are more suitable for use with museum specimens than earlier methods. The technique for nonpasserines is based on a new primer (M5) which, in combination with the existing P8 primer, targets a smaller amplicon in the CHD1 sex-linked gene than(More)
House-sparrow populations have declined sharply in Western Europe in recent decades, but the reasons for this decline have yet to be identified, despite intense public interest in the matter. Here we use a combination of field experimentation, genetic analysis and demographic data to show that a reduction in winter food supply caused by agricultural(More)
We present a comprehensive protocol for extracting DNA from egg membranes and other internal debris recovered from the interior of blown museum bird eggs. A variety of commercially available DNA extraction methods were found to be applicable. DNA sequencing of polymerase chain reaction (PCR) products for a 176-bp fragment of mitochondrial DNA was successful(More)