Old endemics and new invaders: Alternative strategies of passerines for living in the Australian environment

  • Geffen E
  • Yom-Tov Y
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Life history parameters of ”old endemics” and ”new invaders” among the Australian passerines were compared, controlling for phylogeny by using current, phylogenetic research methods. Old endemics were found to have significantly smaller clutches and demonstrated significantly more cooperative breeding than the new invaders, whose fledging periods are significantly longer than those of the old endemics. We argue that breeding under conditions of a small annual food increment during the breeding season, as is probably the situtation in Australia, is possible only when clutch size is small, or while breeding cooperatively, or by extending the fledging period. Our data show that the old endemics use the first two options, while the new invaders employ the third.

Author-supplied keywords

  • Australia
  • Clutch size
  • Fledging
  • Incubation
  • Life history parameters
  • Passerines

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  • Eli Geffen

  • Yoram Yom-Tov

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