Genetic similarity between mates and extra-pair parentage in three species of shorebirds

D Blomqvist, M Andersson, C Kupper, I C Cuthill, J Kis, R B Lanctot, B K Sandercock, T Szekely, J Wallander, B Kempenaers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

174 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Matings between close relatives often reduce the fitness of offspring, probably because homozygosity leads to the expression of recessive deleterious alleles(1-5). Studies of several animals have shown that reproductive success is lower when genetic similarity between parents is high(4-7), and that survival and other measures of fitness increase with individual levels of genetic diversity(8-11). These studies indicate that natural selection may favour the avoidance of matings with genetically similar individuals. But constraints on social mate choice, such as a lack of alternatives, can lead to pairing with genetically similar mates. In such cases, it has been suggested that females may seek extra-pair copulations with less related males(4), but the evidence is weak or lacking(4,5). Here we report a strong positive relationship between the genetic similarity of social pair members and the occurrence of extra-pair paternity and maternity ('quasi-parasitism') in three species of shorebirds. We propose that extra-pair parentage may represent adaptive behavioural strategies to avoid the negative effects of pairing with a genetically similar mate.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)613-615
Number of pages3
JournalNature
Volume419
Issue number6907
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2002

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parentage
homozygosity
paternity
mating behavior
copulation
natural selection
parasitism
alleles
genetic variation
animals
genetic similarity
reproductive success

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Blomqvist, D., Andersson, M., Kupper, C., Cuthill, I. C., Kis, J., Lanctot, R. B., ... Kempenaers, B. (2002). Genetic similarity between mates and extra-pair parentage in three species of shorebirds. Nature, 419(6907), 613-615. https://doi.org/10.1038/nature01104

Genetic similarity between mates and extra-pair parentage in three species of shorebirds. / Blomqvist, D; Andersson, M; Kupper, C; Cuthill, I C; Kis, J; Lanctot, R B; Sandercock, B K; Szekely, T; Wallander, J; Kempenaers, B.

In: Nature, Vol. 419, No. 6907, 2002, p. 613-615.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Blomqvist, D, Andersson, M, Kupper, C, Cuthill, IC, Kis, J, Lanctot, RB, Sandercock, BK, Szekely, T, Wallander, J & Kempenaers, B 2002, 'Genetic similarity between mates and extra-pair parentage in three species of shorebirds', Nature, vol. 419, no. 6907, pp. 613-615. https://doi.org/10.1038/nature01104
Blomqvist D, Andersson M, Kupper C, Cuthill IC, Kis J, Lanctot RB et al. Genetic similarity between mates and extra-pair parentage in three species of shorebirds. Nature. 2002;419(6907):613-615. https://doi.org/10.1038/nature01104
Blomqvist, D ; Andersson, M ; Kupper, C ; Cuthill, I C ; Kis, J ; Lanctot, R B ; Sandercock, B K ; Szekely, T ; Wallander, J ; Kempenaers, B. / Genetic similarity between mates and extra-pair parentage in three species of shorebirds. In: Nature. 2002 ; Vol. 419, No. 6907. pp. 613-615.
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