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There is accumulating evidence that individuals leave their natal area and select a breeding habitat non-randomly by relying upon information about their natal and future breeding environments. This variation in dispersal is not only based on external information (condition dependence) but also depends upon the internal state of individuals (phenotype(More)
Corticosterone is an important hormone of the stress response that regulates physiological processes and modifies animal behavior. While it positively acts on locomotor activity, it may negatively affect reproduction and social activity. This suggests that corticosterone may promote behaviors that increase survival at the cost of reproduction. In this(More)
A challenge to ecologists and evolutionary biologists is predicting organismal responses to the anticipated changes to global ecosystems through climate change. Most evidence suggests that short-term global change may involve increasing occurrences of extreme events, therefore the immediate response of individuals will be determined by physiological(More)
Mating is crucial for females that reproduce exclusively sexually and should influence their investment into reproduction. Although reproductive adjustments in response to mate quality have been tested in a wide range of species, the effect of exposure to males and mating per se has seldom been studied. Compensatory mechanisms against the absence of mating(More)
To elucidate the developmental aspects of the evolution of sexual size dimorphism (SSD), an understanding of the sex-specific ontogeny of body size is critical. Here, we evaluate the relative importance of genetic and environmental determinants of SSD in juvenile common lizards (Lacerta vivipara). We examined the prenatal and post-natal effects of(More)
Hormones are an important interface between genome and environment, because of their ability to modify the phenotype. More particularly, glucocorticoids are known to affect both morphological, physiological and behavioral traits. Many studies suggest that prenatal stress (associated with an elevation of corticosterone) has deleterious effects on offspring,(More)
Many animals exhibit dramatic responses when subjected to a stressor. A classic marker of the stress response is an increase in plasma glucocorticoids, but this constitutes only one step in the cascade from experience of a stressor to wider organismal changes, including behavior. The behavioral sensitivity to glucocorticoids would determine the consequences(More)
Dispersal is a complex phenomenon affected by multiple factors. Among the factors that influence dispersal in the common lizard (Lacerta vivipara), poor maternal body condition and stress are known to decrease dispersal propensity of juveniles. But the effect of individual factors on dispersal could change when several of them act concurrently or at(More)
Experimental studies have often been employed to study costs of reproduction, but rarely to study costs of gestation. Disentangling the relative importance of each stage of the reproductive cycle should help to assess the costs and benefits of different reproductive strategies. To that end, we experimentally reduced litter size during gestation in a(More)
Under chronic stress, carotenoid-based colouration has often been shown to fade. However, the ecological and physiological mechanisms that govern colouration still remain largely unknown. Colour changes may be directly induced by the stressor (for example through reduced carotenoid intake) or due to the activation of the physiological stress response (PSR,(More)