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  Trans-generational influence of human disturbances in japanese quail: Egg quality influences male social and sexual behaviour

Bertin, A., Hirschenhauser, K., & Kotrschal, K. (2009). Trans-generational influence of human disturbances in japanese quail: Egg quality influences male social and sexual behaviour. Ethology, 115(9), 879-887. doi:10.1111/j.1439-0310.2009.01672.x.

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 Creators:
Bertin, Aline, Author
Hirschenhauser, Katharina1, Author              
Kotrschal, K., Author
Affiliations:
1Abteilung Gahr, Seewiesen, Max Planck Institut für Ornithologie, Max Planck Society, ou_2149688              

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 Abstract: In many bird species prenatal exposure to yolk androgens of maternal origin has been found to influence offspring behavioural phenotype. In contrast to altricial birds, far less is known about maternal effects in precocial birds. In a previous experiment we found that female quail (Coturnix japonica) that were not previously habituated to humans (NH) produced eggs with less androgens (testosterone, androstenedione) and more progesterone when exposed to human disturbances than females habituated to humans (H). Here, we analysed social motivation and sexual behaviour of the male offspring of NH and H females. Classical behavioural test procedures were applied including separation, runway, partner choice and female encounter tests. As chicks, offspring of the NH females spent more time far from conspecifics than offspring of the H females. As adults, the same NH males showed less crowing and courtship behaviour (ritual preening) in female encounter tests than H males. Thus, maternal environment and egg quality may be key factors in the emergence of individual variability of appetitive behaviour, such as social proximity and courtship behaviour. Human disturbance of the mother seems to have triggered trans-generational effects resulting in consistently reduced social and sexual motivation in offspring until adulthood.

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 Dates: 2009
 Publication Status: Published in print
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 Rev. Type: -
 Identifiers: Other: WOS:000268925400009
DOI: 10.1111/j.1439-0310.2009.01672.x
ISSN: 0179-1613
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Title: Ethology
Source Genre: Journal
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Publ. Info: Berlin : P. Parey
Pages: - Volume / Issue: 115 (9) Sequence Number: - Start / End Page: 879 - 887 Identifier: ISSN: 0179-1613
CoNE: https://pure.mpg.de/cone/journals/resource/110978978196672