Data from: To breed or not to breed: endocrine response to mercury contamination by an Arctic seabirdSabrina Tartu, Aurélie Goutte, Paco Bustamante, Frédéric Angelier, Børge Moe, Céline Clément-Chastel, Claus Bech, Geir Wing Gabrielsen, Jan Ove Bustnes & Olivier Chastel
Mercury, a ubiquitous toxic element, is known to alter expression of sex steroids and to impair reproduction across vertebrates but the mechanisms underlying these effects are not clearly identified. We examined whether contamination by mercury predicts the probability to skip reproduction in black-legged kittiwakes (Rissa tridactyla) from Svalbard. We also manipulated the endocrine system to investigate the mechanism underlying this relationship. During the pre-laying period, we injected exogenous GnRH (gonadotropin-releasing hormone) to test the ability...
The operational sex ratio (OSR) and density are considered important factors affecting the strength of sexual selection. While there is increasing evidence that OSR and density affect the potential for sexual selection, few studies have addressed whether this is realized in phenotypic selection and how the two factors interact. We manipulated OSR (three levels) and male density (two levels) in 36 experimental breeding populations of Gobiusculus flavescens – a fish with paternal care. We measured...
Changes in telomere length are believed to reflect changes in physiological state and life expectancy in animals. However, much remains unknown about the determinants of telomere dynamics in wild populations, and specifically the influence of conditions during highly mobile life-history stages, for example migration. We tested whether telomere dynamics were associated with migratory behaviour and/or with stress during reproduction in free-living seabirds. We induced short-term stress during reproduction in chick-rearing, black-legged kittiwakes (Rissa tridactyla), tracked...
Data from: Cryptic choice of conspecific sperm controlled by the impact of ovarian fluid on sperm swimming behaviourSarah Elizabeth Yeates, Sian Elizabeth Diamond, Sigurd Einum, Brent C. Emerson, William V. Holt & Matthew J. G. Gage
Despite evidence that variation in male-female reproductive compatibility exists in many fertilization systems, identifying mechanisms of cryptic female choice at the gamete level has been a challenge. Here, under risks of genetic incompatibility through hybridization, we show how salmon and trout eggs promote fertilization by conspecific sperm. Using in vitro fertilization experiments that replicate the gametic micro-environment, we find complete inter-fertility between both species. However, if either species’ ova were presented with equivalent numbers of...
Data from: Persistent organic pollution in a high-Arctic top predator: sex-dependent thresholds in adult survivalKjell Einar Erikstad, Hanno Sandvik, Tone Kristin Reiertsen, Jan Ove Bustnes, Hallvard Strøm & H. Strom
In long-lived species, any negative effect of pollution on adult survival may pose serious hazards to breeding populations. In the present study we measured concentrations of various organochlorines (OCs: PCB and organochlorine pesticides) in the blood of a large number of adult glaucous gulls (Larus hyperboreus) breeding on Bjørnøya (Bear Island) in the Norwegian Arctic, and modelled their local survival using capture–recapture analysis. Survival was negatively associated with concentrations of OCs in the blood. The...
Data from: Spatial variation in the relationship between performance and metabolic rate in wild juvenile Atlantic salmonGrethe Robertsen, John D. Armstrong, Keith H. Nislow, Ivar Herfindal, Simon McKelvey & Sigurd Einum
1. Maintenance metabolic rate (MR, the energy cost of self-maintenance) is linked to behavioural traits and fitness and varies substantially within populations. Despite having received much attention, the causes and consequences of this variation remain obscure. 2. Theoretically, such within-population variation in fitness-related traits can be maintained by environmental heterogeneity in selection patterns, but for MR this has rarely been tested in nature. 3. Here, we experimentally test if the relationship between MR and performance...
Data from: How spatial variation in areal extent and configuration of labile vegetation states affect the riparian bird community in Arctic tundraJohn-André Henden, Nigel G. Yoccoz, Rolf A. Ims & Knut Langeland
The Arctic tundra is currently experiencing an unprecedented combination of climate change, change in grazing pressure by large herbivores and growing human activity. Thickets of tall shrubs represent a conspicuous vegetation state in northern and temperate ecosystems, where it serves important ecological functions, including habitat for wildlife. Thickets are however labile, as tall shrubs respond rapidly to both abiotic and biotic environmental drivers. Our aim was to assess how large-scale spatial variation in willow thicket...
Norwegian Institute for Nature Research7
Norwegian University of Science and Technology6
French National Centre for Scientific Research2
Norwegian Polar Institute2
Northern Research Station1
University of Alaska Fairbanks1
University of East Anglia1
Spanish National Research Council1
University of La Rochelle1