Incubation and Chick-Rearing
This chapter focuses on individual variation in parental care, the relationship between individual variation and maternal fitness, and the physiological mechanisms underlying this variation. For example, does individual variation in incubation behavior (e.g., the timing of onset, intensity, constancy) determine the number and quality of chicks at hatching? Or, does individual variation in chick-provisioning or other components of parental investment (e.g., brooding, guarding, feeding) explain the number and quality of chicks that fledge and ultimately are recruited to the breeding population? If there are fitness consequences of variation in parental care, then what are the physiological mechanisms that underpin individual variation in parental effort?
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