Carotenoid‐based coloration correlates with the hatching date of Blue Tit Cyanistes caeruleus nestlings

  title={Carotenoid‐based coloration correlates with the hatching date of Blue Tit
 Cyanistes caeruleus
  author={Katarzyna Janas and Dorota Lutyk and Joanna Sudyka and Anna Dubiec and Lars Gustafsson and Mariusz Cichoń and Szymon M. Drobniak},
Carotenoid‐based coloration occurs predominantly in adult birds, yet in some species from the family Paridae, this trait is also present at the nestling stage. One of the factors proposed to affect the expression of this trait in immature birds is hatching date. Here, using the avian tetrahedral colour space model, we examined the influence of hatching date on the breast carotenoid‐based plumage coloration of the Blue Tit Cyanistes caeruleus nestlings. Because Blue Tits are sexually dichromatic… 
1 Citations
Experimental evidence that adult UV/yellow colouration functions as a signal in blue tit families — but only for parents
In bi-parental species, reproduction is not only a crucial life-history stage where individuals must take fitness-related decisions, but these decisions also need to be adjusted to the


Plumage yellowness predicts foraging ability in the blue tit Cyanistes caeruleus
The results obtained in the present study indicate that ventral plumage coloration in blue tits may advertise the ingested carotenoids (carotenoid foraging ability) and also their overall parental quality in terms of nestling provisioning rates, and suggests that plumage yellowness can be used as an indicator of foraging abilities in this species.
The Condition‐Dependent Development of Carotenoid‐Based and Structural Plumage in Nestling Blue Tits: Males and Females Differ
The pronounced sex specificity of condition dependence of structural and carotenoid‐based coloration is suggestive of a signaling function of the fledgling plumage.
Habitat structure is associated with the expression of carotenoid-based coloration in nestling blue tits Parus caeruleus
It is suggested that breast feather coloration can be used as an indicator of nestling quality because nestlings with more intense yellow plumage coloration had larger body size and stronger immune responses to the injection of phytohemagglutinin (PHA).
Growth conditions affect carotenoid-based plumage coloration of great tit nestlings
Effect of brood size manipulation on fledgling plumage colour was independent of the body mass, indicating that growth environment affects fledgling body mass and plumages colour by different pathways.
No evidence for survival selection on carotenoid‐based nestling coloration in great tits (Parus major)
The results indicate that the carotenoid‐based coloration of nestling great tits is currently not under natural selection and it suggests that past selection pressures or selection acting on correlated traits may have led to its evolution.
Proximate mechanisms of variation in the carotenoid‐based plumage coloration of nestling great tits (Parus major L.)
Three of the five proposed mechanisms can generate individual variation in the expression of carotenoid‐based plumage coloration in the wild and thus could maintain honesty in a trait potentially used for signalling of individual quality.
Carotenoid-based colour expression is determined early in nestling life
It is shown that the carotenoid-based colour expression of nestlings is modified maximally during the first 6 days after hatching, and suggests that paternally derived carOTenoids are the most important determinants of nestling plumage colour.
Plumage colour in nestling blue tits: sexual dichromatism, condition dependence and genetic effects
It is concluded that the expression of both carotenoid–based and structural coloration seems to be condition dependent in blue tit nestlings, and that there are additional genetic effects on the hue of the UV/blue tail feathers.
Habitat structure and prey composition generate contrasting effects on carotenoid-based coloration of great tit Parus major nestlings
The view that habitat structure and prey composition may produce divergent effects on feather pigmentation, and that prey proportions and variables related to parental investment should be assessed when considering carotenoid-based coloration of chicks is supported.
Effects of carotenoid availability during laying on reproduction in the blue tit
The results suggest that carotenoid availability is limiting during egg laying, and that females may have to balance the benefits of investing in egg quality against the potential costs of impairing their own future antioxidant protection.