The Monogamy Method
Monogamous social structures among mammals, which is estimated at 3-5 (Kleiman, 1977). Those rare cases of monogamous social structure among mammals appear to reflect harsher environmental conditions where pair bonding and paternal care increase reproductive fitness (Emlen and Oring, 1977). Therefore, for a species to be monogamous, something in the neurobiology of social behavior has to change dramatically. Monogamy, even though rare, has emerged multiple times across diverse mammalian taxa. The repeated appearance of monogamous social structure in distantly related taxa and the diversity of social structure among closely related species suggest that these dramatic changes in underlying neurobiology must happen rapidly, independently, and perhaps reversibly.
Kiwis are shy, night birds with a keen sense of smell. They are monogamous, meaning they mate with only one partner. They pair up for at least two or three breeding seasons and sometimes for life. The female usually digs a nest in the ground where she lays one or two large eggs, weighing about 1 pound (0.45 kilograms) each.
Behavior and reproduction Brown kiwis are nocturnal, meaning they are most active at night. During the day, they sleep in dens or burrows. They are monogamous, meaning they mate with only one partner during one or more breeding seasons. They live in pairs and are territorial, meaning they are protective of an area they consider home and claim exclusively for themselves. A brown kiwi pair's territory ranges from 12 to 106 acres (5 to 43 hectares).
Breeds primarily during monsoon season. Nest is deep cup of plant down and spider silk, lined with grass, and suspended from fork of a shrub or tree. One to three eggs are incubated 13-14 days by female nestlings, fed by both parents, leave after 15-16 days, fed by parents additional two or more weeks.
Marsupial mating systems are not well known. Some species may be monogamous, but most are probably polygy-nous or promiscuous. The marsupials are a group defined by their reproductive biology. Female marsupials give birth to live young, but at a very early stage after a very short gestation (for example 21 days in the common wombat, 17 days in the brushtail possum, 32 days in the eastern gray kangaroo). Female marsupials have two uteri and two vaginas. Young developing in one or both uteri are born through a third opening, which only develops when the female is due to give birth for the first time. In most marsupials this birth canal is a temporary structure that seals over after the birth of every litter, but in certain diprotodonts (the kangaroos and the honey possum) it becomes permanent.
Across mammal species generally, there is a fairly consistent relationship between the average litter size and the typical number of teats possessed by the mother. As a rule, it can be said that there is one pair of teats for each offspring in the typical litter. However, suckling of the offspring is just one aspect of parental care in mammals. Maternal care, which can include nest building, grooming of the offspring, and infant carriage, is found in all mammals. Paternal care is relatively rare and is usually restricted to grooming and or carriage. Predictably, paternal care in mammals is usually restricted to monogamous species in which there is a relatively high level of certainty of paternity.
Behavior and reproduction Black rails are territorial during the breeding season. Some populations migrate while others remain in the same place throughout the year. Most black rails are monogamous, although in rare instances a male may breed with multiple females (polygamy). In the United States black rails breed in the summer. In other parts of its range breeding occurs during the rainy season. Black rails nest in low vegetation, where they build a bowl-shaped nest out of grass. The nest is covered with a woven canopy. Females lay anywhere from two to thirteen eggs at a time. Eggs hatch after seventeen to twenty days.
Greater painted snipes are either polyandrous, with each female mating with multiple males, or monogamous, with each female mating with only one male. The greater painted snipe may breed at any time during the year, but most frequently breeds after rainfalls. Females usually lay four eggs at a time in a shallow grass bowl-shaped nest. Nests are usually hidden in moist vegetation. Males are responsible for incubating, or sitting on, the eggs. Chicks hatch after fifteen to twenty-one days. Greater painted snipe chicks are precocial, and are usually able to leave the nest fairly quickly after hatching. Chicks are cared for exclusively by the male.
Most stilts and avocets are monogamous (muh-NAH-guh-mus), with a single male breeding with a single female at one time. Birds may change mates over the course of a breeding season, however. To attract females, males perform a display that involves dipping their heads, shaking, and then preening, or smoothing their feathers. After mating, the male and female
Behavior and reproduction Beach thick-knees fly away when disturbed, usually over the water. Beach thick-knees are monogamous. The nest is usually a shallow depression that is sometimes surrounded by a ring of leaves. The female lays only one egg at a time. The egg hatches after thirty days. The chick is able to fly after twelve weeks, but may stay with its parents for as long as a year.
Behavior and reproduction When disturbed, African snipes make a harsh calling noise and escape using a characteristic zigzag flight. Male African snipes attract females by making a drumming noise with their tail feathers. African snipes are monogamous, with a single male mating with a single female. Breeding occurs during or after the rainy season. The female lays two to three eggs at a time, generally in a hidden grassy area on moist or wet ground.
This species difference in response to vasopressin appears to be explained in part by species differences in receptor distribution patterns for V1aR. As with the oxytocin receptor, V1aR distribution patterns are highly variable across species. Further, V1aR distribution patterns seem to correlate with species differences in social structure. For example, comparisons of distribution patterns among vole species revealed high levels of V1aR in the ventral pallidum in the prairie vole, but very little binding in this brain region in the nonmonogamous montane vole (Insel et al., 1994). The ventral pallidum is a key component of ventral forebrain reward pathways. In similar comparisons in other mammalian taxa, the same relationship exists between V1aR levels in the ventral pallidum and monogamous social structure (Young, 1999). For example, the monogamous mouse, Peromyscus californicus, has much higher levels of V1aR in the ventral pallidum compared to its nonmonogamous sister species, P....
Preference formation in male prairie voles (Lim and Young, 2004). These functional studies demonstrate a role for V1aR in the ventral pallidum in the modulation of social behavior in a monogamous species, and suggest that V1aR in the ventral pallidum is an important difference between monogamous and nonmonogamous voles. Using viral vector gene transfer technology, it is possible to address whether V1aR levels in the ventral pallidum significantly contribute to social behavior. An adeno-associated viral vector expressing the prairie vole V1aR was placed in the ventral pallidum of nonmonogamous meadow voles (M. pennsyl-vanicus) (Lim et al., 2004). The viral vector increased levels of V1aR in the ventral pallidum and induced partner preference formation in male meadow voles. Parental care, another monogamy-related social behavior, was not influenced by this treatment, indicating that V1aR in ventral pallidum modulates the partner preference aspect of monogamy, but not other important...
Because the ventral pallidum is a key component of ventral forebrain reward circuitry, and because dopamine is a key neurotransmitter of this circuitry, the role of dopamine in partner preference formation was assessed. Pharmacological manipulation of dopamine in this circuitry modulates partner preference in monogamous prairie voles (Aragona et al., 2003 Gingrich et al., 2000 Wang et al., 1999). Further, in the V1aR viral vector-treated meadow vole, pharmacological blockade of D2 dopamine receptors with eticlopride eliminated the V1aR vector-induced partner preferences. Therefore, similar to the effect of endogenous V1aR in monogamous prairie voles, these exogenous V1aRs in the meadow vole appear to modulate highly conserved ventral forebrain reward circuits (Lim et al., 2004).
The coding regions between montane vole and prairie vole avprla share 99 identity. There are four amino acid changes out of 420 between these two sister species at this locus, but these differences do not appear to affect quantitative receptor-ligand interaction or affect qualitative second messenger coupling (Insel et al., 1994). Further, there is a second copy of avprla in the prairie vole which contains a truncating mutation, the effects of which have not been explored (Young et al., 1999). Considering that the V1aR of each species binds vasopressin equally, but that the two species show differences in the pattern of receptors in the brain, perhaps differences in gene regulatory mechanisms at the full-length avprla locus may explain these findings. Sequence comparisons in the 5' region between these two species also show high levels of identity, with the striking exception of a highly expanded repetitive region in the 5' regulatory region ( 500 base pairs upstream of the...
Monogamous, but extra-pair copulations probably common, judging by frequency of cloaca-pecking. Female builds nest using spider webs to hold together grasses, bark twigs, rags, feathers, wool, and other debris into oval shape. Nest lined with feathers and wool, decorated with large leaves, lichen, and even cloth, and either placed in bush or suspended. Two heavily marked whitish eggs are laid at any time of year and incubated by female only for two weeks. Nestlings cared for by both parents for two weeks. Fledglings return to nest to roost for first few nights. May be triple-brooded. Parasitized by Klaas's cuckoo.
Examples of cultural variation in morality are easy to come by. In ancient Greece and modern China, infanticide was considered acceptable. In contemporary Euro-American culture, it is treated as murder. In many societies polygamy has been norm. In ours, departures from monogamy are frowned on. In some most societies, brother-sister incest is a serious taboo. In Ptolemaic Egypt, as many as 20 of Greek immigrants may have been married to their siblings. In modern industrialized societies, cannibalism is considered among the most horrific of all possible crimes. In chiefdoms, it has been widely practices, and in Aztec Mexico, thousands of people were probably cannibalized every year. Various historical and
Common white-tooth shrew mothers and young have been observed in caravan, a behavior where a young shrew offspring of six days or older grabs onto the back of its mother, and other young shrews from the litter form a line of shrews by latching onto each other. May form monogamous pairs for breeding.
They are monogamous birds that breed in the summer. The breeding pair will defend their nesting territory. Dollarbirds use loud calling and aerobatics, spectacular flying stunts, in courtship rituals. Females lay three or four eggs, which are laid in high tree hollows, sometimes in woodpecker holes. Nests are often used several years in a row. The incubation period is twenty-two to twenty-three days. Both parents feed the chicks. Parents and chicks leave for wintering areas when chicks are able to fly.
The nest is placed on or near the ground in areas where there are small trees interspersed with low vegetation. Nesting occurs from late May through early July. Three to seven (usually four) eggs are incubated for 11-13 days, and young fledge after 8-9 days. Both parents feed the young.
Behavior and reproduction Ivory-billed woodpeckers have a territory of about 6 square miles (15.5 square kilometers). They are often seen in family groups. Their call is a sad-sounding single-or double-note tooting one such sound is a clarinetlike yank-yank-yank. The birds are monogamous. They breed from January through April in North America and March through June in Cuba. They build nest cavities in large dead trees or in live trees with fungus. Nests are usually built 24 to 50 feet (7.3 to 15.2 meters) off the ground with a cavity often 2 feet (6 meters) in depth. Females lay two to four eggs. The incubation and fledgling periods are not known, but both parents incubate and take care of young.
Forms monogamous pairs in which both parents care for the young. Females lay clutches of about 100 eggs, which hatch in roughly 60 hours, on branches or sturdy leaves. Within 4-5 days, fry become mobile and begin feeding on mucous secreted from flanks of the parents, showing preference for the male. In captivity, this mode of feeding can last as long as 8 weeks, although other foods supplement the habit.
The breeding season of the monogamous (muh-NAH-guh-mus), having only one mate, birds is in the spring-summer, September to February. Rufous horneros will defend their breeding territory, where they construct a large nest made up of thousands of small clumps of moist mud, clay, some dung, and straw carried to a nest site with their bills. The inside of the nest is lined with bits of grasses and stems. The spherical, oven-shaped structure is usually placed on a tree stump, fencepost, telephone pole, or rooftop but can also be placed on older nests, bare ground, or rock. The entrance is usually placed on the side of the nest. Two to five eggs are laid from September to December. The incubation period is fourteen to eighteen days. Both males and females incubate eggs and take care of the nestlings. The nestling period is twenty-three to twenty-six days.
Nests are placed in marshes, but often in vegetation at the edge of marshes they also nest in wet roadside ditches. Females build the nest that often is placed in the center of a tuft of pampas grass. Clutch size is 4-5 eggs, which are laid late September-December. Information on incubation and fledging are not available. Often several helper adults will help feed the young in a nest the relationship of these adults to the young is not known.
Behavior and reproduction Remaining sedentary within well-defined territories for their entire adult lives, rufous scrub-birds dislike disturbance and will run mouse-like into thick foliage at the slightest threat. The species is alert and forages with enthusiasm, but is shy and evasive in general. The female rufous is even more elusive. Because of their underdeveloped wings, rufous scrub-birds run when threatened, instead of flying. During breeding season in September to November (Australia's spring), males use their elevated and fanned tails, lowered wings, and loud, melodious song to woo their partners. They can mimic other birdcalls well, but also use a species-specific chip sound. Rufous scrub-birds are typically monogamous (muh-NAH-guh-mus). Females occupy small areas on the outside of their mates' territories. The birds prefer to have widely spaced territories, with males marking and occupying about 2.5 acres (1 hectare) each, ideally. Females take sole responsibility for their...
Behavior and reproduction This solitary and secretive pipit species is known for flying high into the air when startled. They are also noted for their beautiful, arcing song-flight during mating season in April and May. Mating pairs are monogamous, and build a cup-shaped nest of grass and stems on the ground where tall grass can fall over the structure. The female lays four to seven eggs, and fledglings leave the nest in ten to eleven days.
The female chooses the breeding territory and the male follows and defends the female from other males. Breeding pairs are monogamous and loosely colonial. The female builds a cup-shaped nest of grass, rootlets, lichen, and moss, lined with fine grass, plant down, and feathers. The nest is sited in clefts of rock and cliffs, or sometimes in a cave or the eaves of a building. A clutch of four to five whitish eggs occasionally dotted with reddish brown are incubated by the female for 12-14 days. The altricial young are brooded by the female and fed by both sexes. Both males and females develop a gular pouch in the upper throat with an opening in the floor of the mouth so that they can carry larger amounts of seed back to their young. The young fledge in 16-22 days. Birds breeding in the mountains have one brood per year those living in lower tundra have as many as two.
Members of this family are among the most common mammals in American tropical forests. Rainforests in Central and South America contain 31-49 species of phyllostomids tropical forests receiving less rainfall contain 20-30 species and dry regions contain two to three species. In addition to being one of the most taxonomically diverse families of bats, the Phyllostomidae is the most ecologically diverse group of bats. Food habits range from insects, flowers, and fruit to blood and other vertebrates. Sizes of social groups range from monogamous pairs to colonies containing several hundred thousand individuals.
Behavior and reproduction Ruby-cheeked sunbirds forage in tropical forests, in the canopy and at mid-level, usually in groups of five to ten. They also visit gardens for foraging. The call is a loud chirp. Breeding follows the usual pattern among sunbirds monogamous breeding pairs, purse-like nests, female incubating eggs, and both parents caring for the chicks.
Snow buntings are for the most part monogamous birds, but sometimes males or females will have two mates. Nesting occurs from late May through July. Nests are made with dried grassy plants, lichens, and grasses, and look like a large, thick-walled bulky cup. They are constructed on the ground, frequently in rock crevices. Sometimes they build nests in birdhouses and other artificial structures. Females lay between three to nine eggs, but usually from four to seven. The incubation period is from ten to fifteen days, and the fledgling period is from ten to seventeen days after hatching. Both in the breeding pair feed and take care of young.
Savanna sparrows are usually monogamous, but males are sometimes bigamists (having two mates). Some marsh-dwelling species are polygynous. Nests are woven into the shape of a cup made with grasses and other vegetation. Nests are made on the ground or in a slight depression that is partly covered by grasses or other vegetation. From February to August, females lay one to two clutches of two to six eggs. The incubation period is ten to thirteen days and the
Magpie-larks breed in monogamous pairs that tend to stay together for life (though Michelle Hall's study showed the occasional divorce when a better option presented itself ). Males and females share parental care, and may rear more than one clutch over the breeding season. Most juveniles leave their natal territory when they reach independence, though some remain over winter. After leaving their natal territories, juveniles join large semi-nomadic flocks until they form pairs and establish their own territories.
Behavior and reproduction Mating is at first monogamous, later changing to polygamous, meaning that the birds begin with one mate each and the male eventually finds other females to mate with. After the male has built one nest and attracted and mated with a female, he builds another nest and tries to entice another female to move in. One male may support up to five females in five nests.
Socially pair-bonded non-territorial monogamy with both sexes presumed to incubate and provision nestlings, as in other manucodes. Breeding during at least July through September, and in January. Nest is a shallow open cup suspended by its rim from a branch fork. Clutch is one or two eggs. In being monogamous, Manucodia provide an interesting contrast to the majority of polygynous family members for socio-ecological study.
A variety of social systems are known in voles and lemmings. One common system that occurs in many species is comprised of mutually exclusive female territories and larger overlapping male territories that vary in location and size in response to receptive females. However, in the field vole (Mi-crotus agrestis) it is the males whose territories are strongly defended and exclusive, while the females have widely overlapping home ranges. Some species of meadow vole are believed to be highly monogamous, and the social systems and the degree of territoriality or tolerance almost certainly vary with density in many of the cyclic species.
In order to reproduce, mammals have to find and recognize an appropriate mate (belonging to the same species, opposite sex, adult, in breeding mood, sexually appealing). Monogamous mammals undergo this search once in life solitary mammals have to seek mates each year. Subterranean mammals do not differ in this respect from their surface-dwelling counterparts. In 1987, two research teams reported, simultaneously and independently, the discovery of a new, previously unconsidered, mode of communication in blind molerats vibrational (seismic) signaling. The animals can put themselves into efficient contact through vibrational signals produced by head drumming upon the ceiling of the tunnel. Communicative drumming by hind feet was reported for solitary African mole-rats (Georychus and Bathyergus). This behavior, however, could not be found in another solitary African mole-rat, the silvery mole-rat (Heliophobius). It can be speculated that seismic signaling evolved in those solitary species...
Individuals may live alone (except during mating), or as monogamous, pair-bonded male and female, or in small groups. Whether a loner, or one of a pair or group, a sengi patrols its territory constantly. A male-female bonded pair defends its territory sex-specifically against other members of its species, i.e., males confront and chase off intruding males, females do likewise to trespassing females.
Gestation, on average, lasts 112 days. Litter size varies, ranging from one to four offspring per year (usually one to two), normally born in grass-lined chamber within burrow. Well-developed young are born with eyes open and short soft quills covering body. Birth weight is around 12 oz (340 g). Nursing lasts about 3.5 months. Usually monogamous, with both parents found in burrow with offspring throughout year.
Relatively little longitudinal research has been conducted on gay and lesbian relationships (Kimmel & Sang, 1995 Kurdek, 1991a, 1991b, 1995a, 1995b), but some facts are available. For example, informal marriages between homosexuals tend to be less stable than legal marriages between heterosexuals. Lesbians are more monogamous than gays, more likely to confide Bell and Weinberg (1978) differentiate between close-coupled, or enduring monogamous relationships, and open-coupled relationships in which two homosexuals live together but have other lovers as well. Close-coupled, or exclusive, relationships are generally happier than open-coupled ones and are more common among older than younger gays. Many of these partnerships are satisfying and enduring (Butler & Lewis, 1993). The fear of AIDS has also influenced the durability of homosexual relationships in recent years, resulting in a greater frequency of gay marriages that are close-coupled. Relationships between lesbian couples can also...
To address the third question, physiological correlates of learning are known for at least several learning phenomena brain areas responsible for spatial learning are larger in males of those vole species whose spatial learning is better than females, but not in those without such a sex difference. The olfactory bulb in the brain of a young ferret during the critical period of olfactory food imprinting is larger than before or after this time. We also know that thyroxine, the hormone of the thyroid gland, is responsible for neurological changes during food imprinting in this species, and that oxytocin, a pituitary hormone, is necessary in the brain of monogamous animals to learn who their specific partner is during pair formation. Several areas in the limbic system of the brain, particularly the hippocampus, have been identified as being responsible for exploratory behavior and learning.
Behavior and reproduction Eclectus parrots are monogamous and are believed to breed year-round. However, they are thought to mate mostly between August and January. Birds are group-oriented, and there may be four nests in a tree. The parrots are cooperative breeders, parents are helped by other birds. The assistants are thought to be offspring or adult relatives of the expectant parents. The female has a clutch of two eggs that hatch in twenty-six days.
The cactus wren is monogamous (muh-NAH-guh-mus). The breeding nest is an oval-like ball with a side entrance hole that is made of dry grasses and fibers lined with feathers. They are usually located right in spiny cacti and no effort is made to hide them. The female usually lays three to five eggs, though the number can range from two to seven, and they are light brown or pinkish in color with tiny speckles of reddish brown. The female alone incubates the eggs in a period that can last sixteen days. The newly hatched and young birds are fed by both sexes for nineteen to twenty-three days. The cactus wren might attempt up to six broods a year, though usually only three of those are successfully reared.
There is a tendency towards monogamy, with one adult male and one adult female often occupying a joint territory, but a male may associate with more than one female. Births occur in November-January. Ovarian cycle length about 15 days. Typically gives birth to a single infant. Gestation period unknown.
In addition, the acting-out type can be involved in physical confrontations, cruelty, and overall delinquent behavior. Irritability and impatience are typical aspects of the acting-out process. Planning ability and judgment are adversely affected by the pressure to act and expedience and lying are often utilized. This overall immaturity, along with the characteristic features of an absence of guilt or remorse, make it very difficult for such a person to establish a meaningful monogamous relationship. Correspondingly, the deemphasis of conscience results in adoption of manipulative behaviors as a major characteristic. The severe aspect of this dyscontrolled acting-out type in its most pathological form is consistent with criminal behavior and not simply petit delinquency.
Behavior and reproduction Eiders migrate in a straight line. They are seasonally monogamous, and the male leaves the female midway through incubation. Females lay four to five eggs into holes in the ground that have little lining. Incubation lasts twenty-two to twenty-four days. Ducklings are ready to breed at three years.
Duets are thought to be involved in pair-bond maintenance, synchronization of sexual activity, or cooperative territorial defense, and are generally associated with monogamous species that maintain territories year-round. A Prima subflava female occasionally adds her own complementary rattle to the notes of a singing male, creating a duet. The female Prima bairdii is known to duet during territory advertisement. A few Cisticola species (C. hunteri, C. chubbi, C. nigriloris) also engage in duetting. Apalis flavida duets, but not for territory defense. Other genera with species that duet include Bathmocercus, Bradypterus, Drymocichla, Schistolais, and Spiloptila. Almost all Old World warblers are territorial. Typically, the male defends a territory with song, display, and sometimes chasing and fighting. The majority of antagonistic behavior in migratory species occurs in the early spring during initial territory settlement and mate acquisition. In several monogamous species the female...
During courtship, the male leads the female to potential nest sites. The nest, built by both sexes, is a neat cup of plant fibers often camouflaged and placed high on a branch or fork of a tree or shrub. Four or five eggs are incubated by both parents for 11-15 days. Female broods the nestlings, but later both sexes feed young. Fledging occurs after 10-15 days.
Nest is neat cup of plant material, decorated on outside with bark, paper, wool, etc., built by female in fork of shrub or tree. Four to five eggs incubated by female for 13-15 days young, cared for by both parents, leave nest after 12-16 days, independent after 1-2 weeks.
Socially monogamous and sexually promiscuous, with males wandering into adjacent territories, often carrying yellow flower petals to attract females males may father less than half of the offspring produced in their territory. Clutch is three to four red-spotted, white eggs. Female incubates for two weeks fledging in 10-14 days.
Typically occurs as monogamous pairs or family groups of pairs with one or two young on territories of 10-50 acres (4-20 ha). Breeding pairs are likely stable over long periods. One young born after a gestation period estimated at five or six months. Weaning thought to occur at three to four months. Dry brush and scrub habitats where thickets provide food and cover. Territorial, occurs in monogamous pairsor singly.
Males and females search for nesting ground together. The female lays eight to twelve eggs in her ground nest. Incubation lasts twenty-seven to twenty-eight days, during which the male leaves the female to join a new flock. Ducklings fly between the age of fifty and sixty days and are ready to breed at one year. Mallards are seasonally monogamous, have just one mate per season, and have been known to breed with other species.
Pairs form in the fall and are seasonally monogamous. The female lays anywhere from six to fifteen eggs in nests that are actually holes in tree trunks or former woodpecker holes. Incubation lasts twenty-eight to thirty-seven days, and the male leaves just a few days before ducklings hatch. Young leave the nest within two days and are ready to mate at one year. Snapping turtles are the primary predators of eggs and ducklings.
Nocturnal, arboreal, lacks a gliding membrane but is capable of quite extensive leaps. Lives in family groups of up to eight animals. Mating system monogamous, females force female offspring to disperse. Territories of 2.4-2.9 ac (1-2 ha) size. No scent glands. One to two young, births peak in May-June and October-November, but occur in all months except January-February. Monogamous.
The willow ptarmigan is monogamous (muh-NAH-guh-mus having just one mate) and each pair has its own territory. Nesting starts anywhere from April to June, depending on the latitude. The female lays eight to eleven eggs and incubates them for twenty-two days. Males keep newly hatched chicks warm. Chicks fly at the age of ten to twelve days. Families stay together until the fall.
Nests are made of sticks as high as 20 feet (6 meters) in trees. Clutch size is two to three eggs, and they are incubated for twenty-eight days. These birds are monogamous. Nests are made of sticks as high as 20 feet (6 meters) in trees. Clutch size is two to three eggs, and they are incubated for twenty-eight days.
Mammals exhibit a wide variety of mating systems, which can be basically divided into promiscuous, monogamous, polygynous, and multi-male. In mammals that live in gregarious social groups, the mating system is commonly (but not always) reflected by the composition of those groups, whereas in dispersed mammals patterns of mating must be determined from observations of interactions between separately ranging, solitary individuals. In all cases, however, it must be remembered that social systems and mating systems do not necessarily coincide. Even with mammals that are seemingly monogamous, genetic tests of paternity are quite likely to produce surprises just as they have already done for several bird species. Monogamy, which is the predominant pattern of social organization and widely assumed to be the dominant mating system among birds, is relatively rare among mammals. It is somewhat more common in carnivores and primates than in other mammals, but even in those groups it is found in...
Buff-spotted flufftails are monogamous, and nests are built on the ground. Nests are dome-shaped and built from dead leaves or grass. The female lays three to five eggs at a time. Eggs hatch after fifteen to sixteen days, and the young are independent after nineteen to twenty-one days.
Breeding occurs once a year a few days after emergence from hibernation. Gestation is 33-34 days. Average litter size of 3-4 with range of 1-7. Weaned at 40 days. Reproductively mature at two years old but reproduction in mature offspring of both sexes is suppressed by the parent of the same sex as long as the offspring remains in the family group. Monogamy is the dominant mating system for Alpine marmots in the French Alps, dominant males sire only two thirds of litters, the other litters are likely sired by lone males living outside of the family group.
Behavior and reproduction Killdeer get their name from their call, which sounds like killdee killdee. Killdeer are often found in small or medium-sized flocks that may include other species of shorebirds. Some populations are migratory while others remain in the same place year-round. Pairs defend territories from other members of the species during the breeding season, and sometimes during the winter as well. Killdeer are monogamous, with a single male breeding with a single female. Often, individuals keep the same mate from one year to the next. Nests are either scraped on the ground or built on gravel-covered
Behavior and reproduction Northern lapwings have been found in flocks of as many as 5,000 individuals, although flocks of about 100 are more common. Northern lapwings are usually monogamous, but there is some polygyny. Females usually lay four eggs at a time. These hatch after twenty-four to thirty-four days. Both parents help
Behavior and reproduction Long-billed curlews are monogamous, with a single male breeding with a single female. Pairs are territorial, defending their nesting area from other pairs. Females lay three to five eggs at a time, generally in short grass. Eggs hatch after twenty-seven or twenty-eight days.
Behavior and reproduction Rufous-bellied seedsnipes are usually found in pairs or small groups. They make loud calls that are described as cackles. Rufous-bellied seedsnipes are monogamous (muh-NAH-guh-mus), with a single male breeding with a single female. The female lays four eggs at a time into a nest that is usually just a scraped indentation in the ground with little or no lining. When neither parent is incubating, or sitting on, the eggs, they are covered with dirt to help keep them warm and hide them.
Most mammalian species are nonmonogamous the female alone cares for the young and males and females do not share nest sites. Within the genus Microtus, there exists ample diversity in social structure for neuroethological and neurobi-ological investigation. Prairie voles (Microtus ochrogaster) are socially monogamous both the males and females contribute to care of the young within a shared nest site as a breeding pair through multiple breeding seasons. Closely related species such as the montane (M. montanus) and meadow (M. pennsylvanicus) voles do not typically show these behaviors. Over a decade of research has demonstrated that species differences in neuropeptide systems play significant roles in the behavioral divergence of these species. In particular, species differences in regional gene expression patterns of neuropeptide receptors in the brain mediate some of the behavioral traits associated with the divergence in social structure. Differences in gene expression patterns of a...
Oxytocin and vasopressin, acting within the brain, appear to play key roles in mammalian sociobehavioral strategies. In the early 1990s, drawing on decades of work on the role of oxytocin in maternal-infant interactions (Kendrick et al., 1987 Pedersen and Prange, 1979), Carter et al. (1992) postulated that oxytocin may play a role in the neurobiology of adult bonding. This hypothesis was tested in the prairie vole (Microtus ochrogaster), which is a socially monogamous rodent species (Getz et al., 1981 Thomas and Birney, 1979). Prior sexual or cohousing experience increased side-by-side resting affiliative behavior in adult prairie voles (Carter et al., 1988). Furthermore, female prairie voles developed a social preference for a male cage-mate after the pair has been housed together for 24 h. The formation of such a partner preference was rapidly facilitated if the pair mated during the cohousing period (Williams et al., 1992b). Apparently, these behavioral manipulations (i.e.,...
Flexible mating system (monogamy, polyandry, polygyny). In groups with more than one adult male, mate guarding occurs during the receptive phase of the breeding female. Gestation length is 125-130 days and twins are the rule. Females give birth usually once per year, and breeding and births are seasonal. Adult males participate in infant carrying.
They usually breed in monogamous pairs, but breeding by two females in the same group is quite common in the wild. Genetic data suggest that only one male breeds in a group. Despite observation of copulations between males and females from different groups, no infants seem to be fathered by extra-group males. Estrus cycle duration is 28-29 days, and gestation length is 141-146 days. In captivity, subordinate females do not show an estrus cycle. Two births per year are common both in captivity and in the wild. When two females are breeding simultaneously in the group, rearing success is lower in the subordinate female even killing of subordinate female infants by the dominant female has been observed in a wild population. Adult males and other group members participate in infant carrying.
Behavior and partner preference behavior even with short-duration cohabitation without mating (Winslow et al., 1993). These effects of vasopressin appear to act through the vasopressin 1a receptor (V1aR), as central injection of V1aR antagonist, but not an oxytocin receptor antagonist, abolished both mating-induced aggression toward novel intruders and formation of partner preferences after 24 h of cohabitation with mating (Winslow et al., 1993), which are hallmark behaviors of monogamous social structure. Apparently, the antagonist had to be present during the initial mating cohabitation bout, since the already high levels of territorial aggression of established breeder males were unaffected by antagonist treatment. In contrast to the effects of exogenous administration of vasopressin on social behavior in prairie voles, central administration of vaso-pressin into the lateral ventricles of nonmonogamous montane voles had no effect on affiliative behavior (Young et al., 1999)....
There are other neuropeptide receptor genes where such a mechanism currently exists. Variation in other gene loci is highly probable, as there are many proteins in the elaborate neural circuitry supporting complex social behavior. It is unlikely that microsatellite variation in just a single gene, like the avprla, acts as a genetic switch, turning monogamy on and off as environmental niches demand. Indeed, phylogenetic evidence from many vole species indicate that the mere presence or absence of a microsatellite in the avprla cannot, in fact, explain the variation in social structure in vole species outside of North America (Fink et al., 2006). However, it is important to clarify that more subtle variation in the microsatellite length and or sequence, in species that have a microsatellite, can modulate V1aR expression in a tuning knob fashion. The presence of a microsatellite confers the potential for length mutation, which can happen rapidly, repeatedly (i.e., independently), and...
Females give birth to a single offspring at the beginning of the rainy season. Males carry infants the majority of the time, beginning at birth. Infants are weaned at 4-5 months. Females become sexually mature at 24-36 months, males at 24-42 months. Both sexes leave the group at three years of age.
Monogamy Monogamy refers to a suite of behaviors that involves at least some of the following (1) nest sharing by a male and a female, (2) shared efforts of taking care of the young, (3) separation-induced vocalizations in the neonate, and (4) mating-induced territorial aggression toward unfamiliar intruders. It is important to note that this definition of monogamy does not include sexual exclusivity. Many monogamous social structures contain ample evidence of extra-pair copulations, including prairie voles, which are a focus of this chapter.
Monogamous (muh-NAH-guh-mus) pairs, birds mated only with each other, usually dig nest burrows in earthen banks, but also use rotten tree trunks. They dig out tunnels that end in a nest chamber about 8 inches (20 centimeters) in diameter. Females usually lay two eggs, which are incubated for about twenty-two days.
Most are monogamous, but individuals of either sex may have two mates. Nesting takes place from late May through July. The nest, which is a large thick-walled bulky cup of dried sedges, grasses, and lichens, is placed on the ground, often in a crevice in rocks. They lay three to nine (usually four to seven) eggs. Incubation lasts 10-15 days, and the young fledge after 10-17 days. Both parents feed the young.
Eggs are laid from May through July. The nest is placed on or close to the ground and is well concealed in vegetation. They lay three to six (usually four to five) eggs incubation lasts 12-14 days, and young fledge at 10-13 days of age. Both parents feed the young.
Monogamous, but extrapair fertilizations are common and bigamy occurs in some populations (probably where densities are high). The nesting season is geographically variable. The well-hidden nest is usually placed on the ground but may be placed in a bush or small tree. They lay two to six (usually five) eggs. Incubation lasts 12-15 (commonly 13) days, and the young fledge after 9-13 (usually 10-12) days. Both parents feed the young.
Mostly monogamous, but in some populations about 20 of the males are polygynous. The nest is placed on the ground in thick tangled grass or in a shrub or depression. They lay two to seven (usually four to five) eggs. Incubation takes 12-14 days, and young fledge in 9-13 days. The female does most of the feeding, but males with more than one mate tend to feed more than males in a monogamous pair.
Behavior and reproduction Red-cockaded woodpeckers are noisy birds, with calls of yank-yank, sripp, and tsick. They are monogamous, with a family clan of the mated pair, current young, and un-mated adult helpers. They nest in the roost cavity of the breeding male, which sometimes takes the male one year to finish (but may be used for years). Only living pine trees are used for the roost nest. They spend a lot of time maintaining the flow of tree sap, which is used to stop predator snakes. Females lay two to five eggs. The incubation period is ten to fifteen days, and the fledgling period is twenty-two to twenty-nine days. Both parents and helpers care for young, with only one brood each year.
The nest cup is low to mid-level in a bush. Commonly two, but occasionally three, eggs are laid during the time of year when their food is most abundant, which varies seasonally and geographically. The incubation period is about 12 days young fledge after 11-13 days.
Nests are a cup of leaves and vines, placed within 3 ft (1 m) of the ground. Generally 1-2 eggs are laid. Breeding season varies geographically in Costa Rica nesting takes place in February-June in South America, in NovemberApril. Incubation and fledging times not reported.
The nest is a bulky cup of grasses and other vegetation, built by the female with some help from the male, and placed 20-25 ft (6-8 m) up in a tree. Generally three eggs are laid in August-December in Guyana, and March in Peru. Incubation 18-20 days fledging time not reported.
Chopi blackbirds commonly nest in holes or crevices in trees, fenceposts, banks, other birds' nests, or old buildings. When not nesting in a cavity, the nest is open and cup-shaped, placed in a dense bush or tree. Four to five eggs are laid in September-January. Information on incubation and fledging not available.
Behavior and reproduction During its song-display, the male horned lark ascends without singing to heights of 300 to 800 feet (91 to 244 meters), where it begins to circle and sing a high-pitched, tinkling song. When it completes the song, the bird closes it wings and drops headfirst, opening its wings and pulling out of the dive at the last possible second. The male also perches on fence posts, rocks, or bushes to sing its mating song. Horned larks are monogamous for at least one mating season (March through July) and prefer to make their cup-shaped nests on the ground in barren, sandy, or stony areas. Females often surround the nest with a ring of pebbles and line it with down, fine grass, and hair. They commonly lay three to five smooth, glossy, pale greenish white and brown-speckled eggs in a clutch at a rate of one per day. Females begin incubating the eggs once the entire clutch has been laid, sitting on the nest for ten to fourteen days. Nestlings, who receive care from both...
Behavior and reproduction Gray wagtails are territorial during the breeding season, March through May. Some defend their feeding areas during winter, when they tend to roost in groups. Mating pairs are monogamous, and the male helps to build the nest, usually on a cliff ledge or among tree roots. The female lays three to seven eggs, and both parents then incubate the young for eleven to fourteen days. The young leave the nest within eleven to seventeen days.
Behavior and reproduction This shy longclaw is territorial during the breeding season, when the species tends to gather into pairs or family groups. Males usually sing from the tops of bushes or during song-flights. Mating pairs are monogamous and breed mostly during or after seasonal rains. The female builds a cup-shaped nest of grass within a tuft of grass, and lays two to four eggs. The female incubates them for thirteen to fourteen days, and the fledglings leave the nest after sixteen days.
Behavior and reproduction Sociable and energetic, fiery minivets are frequent participants in what scientists call mixed-species bird parties, groups that contain a number of bird species. They are believed to be monogamous, with mated pairs working together to build a cup-shaped nest of fine plant parts, spider webs, and lichens, fungus, that they place high in a tree. This species breeds in Palawan's dry season of December and in Malaysia's rainy season that starts in May. The female usually lays two eggs.
Breeding pairs are monogamous and solitary. The female builds a cup-shaped nest of twigs, plant fibers, and rootlets, lined with moss, lichen, fine grass, and rootlets. It is located on the limb of a tree or shrub about 2-25 ft (0.6-7.6 m) above the ground. Two to five blue-green eggs dotted with black, purple, and brown are incubated by the female for 13-15 days. The al-tricial young are brooded by the female, fed by both parents, and fledge in 13-20 days. Like many finches, both males and females develop gular pouches during the nesting season to carry food to their young. One brood per year.
This roosting behavior implies a form of mate-guarding thus, a monogamous mating system is most likely for this species. However, has also been found to roost in larger groups and not in close body contact. Monogamous. A single pup is born at the beginning of the rainy season.
Eastern bluebirds tend to be monogamous, usually having two broods a year, and sometimes three. They nest in tree cavities, or holes sometimes it might be in a cavity abandoned by a woodpecker. The female constructs the nest from dry grasses and weeds or pine needles, lining it with grass and sometimes with hair or fur. She lays three to six eggs that are mostly pale blue, though they can also be white. The female incubates the eggs for twelve to fourteen days. When the young are hatched, they are helpless, naked, and blind, and must stay in the nest where they are nourished and cared for by both parents. They grow their flight feathers about fifteen to twenty days after hatching, and remain in the nest for a few weeks after. If the female is preparing for the second brood, the male will take over the care of the young fledglings. In the case of the second brood, the young from the first also join in their care as well.
Behavior and reproduction Stonechats live in pairs or family groups, perching on open bush tops or on the stems of tall grasses, as well as on overhead wires. They are known for their frequent and harsh calls that sound like scoldings. In breeding, they are monogamous and territorial. They build their nests close to the ground in dense growth, and keep them hidden and sheltered from the sun. Their nests are built from grass stems with an entrance tunnel. The female lays four to six eggs, incubating them for thirteen to fourteen days. Newly hatched young grow their flight feathers after thirteen days.
Solitary and monogamous, although sometimes several pairs nest close together. Male courtship, singing and posturing, occurs away from the nest. Nest is ball-shaped, woven from palm strips, rootlets, or fibers, with canopy over entrance placed low at one side always overhanging water. In Ghana the birds appear to select nest sites close to crocodile dens. Lays one to two eggs during late summer to autumn. Incubation 14 days, fledging 16 days. Female alone incubates, and broods small chicks both male and female feed young.
Often returns to same site, so several old nests may be in close proximity. Nest is retort-shaped with broad entrance tunnel pointing downwards suspended at tip of branch or creeper. Woven of thin vines and creepers, appears rough and always looks old and dry. Lays two to four eggs in summer. Incubation 15-17 days, fledging 22 days. Probably both sexes incubate both feed young.
Breeding activities in colony closely synchronized eggs and chicks may be abandoned when flock moves on. May breed several times in same season, depending on local food supply. Nest built by male, a thin-walled ball with large side entrance. Lays one to five eggs. Incubation 10-12 days, fledging 11-13 days. Both sexes incubate and feed young. Vast colonies with 500 nests per tree attract hundreds of predators, including eagles, vultures, storks, and carnivorous mammals.
Often solitary, monogamous or polygynous sometimes several males in same tree. Nest built by male, at same site in successive seasons, so that several nests may be close together. Retort-shaped structure, woven from twigs and mid-ribs of leaves with rough appearance long vertical entrance spout. Suspended from tree, often one in which raptor is nesting. Female lines nest. Lays one to four eggs from late winter through
Breeding is very seasonal with a small litter size of 2-6 young. The pups are born in a protected site above ground, in a rock crevice or thick bush. The species long legs may make it hard to dig. The role of the male in helping to raise the young in the wild is still not clear. Usually only a single animal is seen with the young. In captivity however, male maned wolves will provision young. It takes about a year for the young to develop to their full height.
They are monogamous and solitary nesters. Nests, which are unique from other penduline tits, are made in the shape of a sphere (ball-like), and constructed by adding several layers of thorny and non-thorny twigs, finally lining the inside with softer materials (such as leaves, grasses, feathers, plant down, and spider's silk). The finished nest is around 8 inches (20 centimeters) in diameter, and may consist of as many as two thousand twigs. Nests are usually near the end of a low limb, or in the fork of a bush or tree, and normally from 2 to 20 feet (0.6 to 6.1 meters) above the ground. Nests are also built 10 or more miles (16 or more kilometers) away from water sources. Males may build several nests within a territory, with the female selecting one of them, which may be then used for several years. The thick walls protect them from the hot desert sun and the cold desert nights. Nests built early in the breeding season have side entrances facing...
The male's courtship rituals also include turning his back to her, and then lifting his head and tail, raising back feathers and drooping wings, and swaying from side to side. The monogamous breeding pair uses cavities of trees (often pine and cottonwood) for their nests, along with old woodpecker holes and bird boxes. Nests are from 5 to 100 feet (1.5 to 30.5 meters) off the ground but usually 15 feet (4.5 meters). The inside of the nest
Before breeding, they build pocket-shaped nests of bark flakes, plant fibers, twigs, conifer needles, mosses, and silks, which are placed behind loose sheets of bark, in a split-out tree, or behind a heavy growth of ivy. Nests are lined inside with feathers and shredded bark. Monogamous (muh-NAH-guh-mus) partners (having one mate) build nests usually 5 to 50 feet (1.5 to 15 meters) above the ground. The nest is built away from other nests and birds. Females lay four to eight eggs, which are lightly flecked with reddish brown. The incubation period is thirteen to seventeen days, which is performed only by the female. The nestling period (time period necessary to take care of young before ready to fly off) is thirteen to sixteen days. Both parents feed the young birds, with only one brood per year.
Behavior and reproduction Purple sunbirds forage for nectar, insects, and related creatures in forests and often visit gardens to seek out nectar. The call can be rendered as a humming zit zit and swee swee. Breeding follows the usual pattern among sunbirds monogamous breeding pairs, purse-like nests, female incubating eggs, and both parents caring for the chicks.
Monogamous in small groups, holding small territories during later austral spring and summer (October-February). Nests are shallow, flimsy, and saucer-like, built of plant fiber and tendrils. Eggs usually three. Both parents share all nesting duties, and additional birds may help feed the young.
They prefer living alone and in pairs, but may be found in small loose flocks in winter, often with other sparrow species. They are generally monogamous birds, but can be polygynous (puh-LIJ-uh-nus having more than one mate). Males aggressively defend their territory, often fighting with other males. Their bulky cup-shaped nests are made of leaves, bark strips, grasses, stems, and other plants and lined with fine materials. Song sparrows usually place nests on the ground, among grasses, or in a low-lying bush or thicket. Nests are usually near a stream. Females lay three to six eggs that are greenish white with reddish brown markings. Nesting is done from late February to August. The incubation period is ten to fourteen days, and the fledgling period is seven to fourteen days. The pair feeds and takes care of the young. Two to three broods are possible each year, with four broods possible in southern areas.
Behavior and reproduction Males sing from perches that make them very visible. The also jump upward with a flick of their wings. In winter, they join flocks of a few hundred seed-eating birds. They are monogamous birds. Nests are built low to the ground, usually not more than 10 feet (3 meters) off the ground. From May through October, females lay two to three eggs. Incubation and fledgling periods are not known.
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