Abstract. In birds, changing mates generally results in decreased breeding success. Although costs and benefits of pair break-up have been well studied, endocrine mechanisms associated with mate change are poorly known. We measured baseline and stress-induced corticosterone levels in relation to mate change in Black-legged Kittiwakes (Rissa tridactyla). Baseline corticosterone levels were higher in kittiwakes breeding with a new mate than in kittiwakes that did not change mate. Stress-induced corticosterone levels were not influenced by change of mate. Elevated baseline corticosterone levels in birds breeding with a new mate could result from the social stress associated with pair break-up or mirror a higher energetic demand resulting from a lack of coordination between new pair members. Our results emphasize the usefulness of corticosterone levels in elucidating the effects of mate change on the energetic demands of reproduction in free-living birds.
You have requested a machine translation of selected content from our databases. This functionality is provided solely for your convenience and is in no way intended to replace human translation. Neither BioOne nor the owners and publishers of the content make, and they explicitly disclaim, any express or implied representations or warranties of any kind, including, without limitation, representations and warranties as to the functionality of the translation feature or the accuracy or completeness of the translations.
Translations are not retained in our system. Your use of this feature and the translations is subject to all use restrictions contained in the Terms and Conditions of Use of the BioOne website.
Vol. 109 • No. 3