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14 August 2009 Sex-specific Growth in Alpine Chamois
Mathieu Garel, Anne Loison, Jean-Michel Jullien, Dominique Dubray, Daniel Maillard, Jean-Michel Gaillard
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Abstract

Studying between-sex differences in body growth has strong implications for understanding life-history tactics of animals. We used age and carcass mass data from 2,312 female and 2,622 male alpine chamois (Rupicapra rupicapra) harvested in the French Alps to model the sex-specific body growth patterns of this species. Males were heavier (asymptotic body mass: 29.6 kg) than females (22.3 kg), with an adult sexual size dimorphism of 32.4%. Sexual size dimorphism originated from both differences in body growth after 1.5 years of age and differences in length of the growth period. Females reached asymptotic body mass almost 3 years earlier (3.5 years) than males (6.2 years). We also found that females 1st reproduced before achieving asymptotic growth, at 78% of their asymptotic body mass. Between-sex differences in growth patterns in this species are most likely due to stronger selection pressure for larger size in males than in females due to intrasexual competition.

Mathieu Garel, Anne Loison, Jean-Michel Jullien, Dominique Dubray, Daniel Maillard, and Jean-Michel Gaillard "Sex-specific Growth in Alpine Chamois," Journal of Mammalogy 90(4), 954-960, (14 August 2009). https://doi.org/10.1644/08-MAMM-A-287.1
Received: 8 September 2008; Accepted: 1 December 2008; Published: 14 August 2009
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KEYWORDS
Bauges
carcass mass
French Alps
life-history tactic
monomolecular model
Rupicapra rupicapra
sexual size dimorphism
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