Songbird Odor Predicts
Reproductive Success
Danielle J. Whittaker
Nicole M. Gerlach
Ellen D. Ketterson
BEACONAn NSF Center...
Preen oil is an odor source
Oil secreted from the uropygial gland
contains volatile compounds that give
birds an odor
Volatile compound concentration increases
during breeding season
0
2
4
6
8
10
12
14
16
18
Concentration
Breeding Non-breed...
Odor varies with sex
and population
MANOVA
Sex p<0.001
Population p=0.022
Sex *
Population p=0.03
Whittaker et al. 2010, B...
Birds can detect and differentiate
among odors
Whittaker et al. 2011, Behavioral Ecology
Does odor
predict
reproductive
success?
Photo by Flickr user Enjoy Every San
Dark-eyed
Juncos (Junco
hyemalis)
Seasonal breeders
Socially
monogamous
~30% extra-pa...
Field Methods
Mountain Lake
Biological
Station, VA
Summer 2008
Captured birds for
measurements, bl
ood samples, and
preen ...
Photo by Dawn O’Neal
Lab Methods
Genotyped at 8
microsatellite loci to
assess parentage
Analyzed chemical
composition of p...
Photo by Flickr user wvsaww
Relative proportions of volatile
compounds
Previous studies found
relationships between
relati...
PC1 PC2 PC3 PC4
1-Decanol 0.131 0.927 -0.078 -0.142
1-Undecanol 0.257 0.925 -0.081 -0.138
1-Dodecanol 0.63 0.663 -0.251 0....
0
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
-1.5 -1 -0.5 0 0.5
Numberofoffspringproduced
PC3 (Relative Proportions)
Female Odor and Reproductive Suc...
0
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
-1.5 -1 -0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 2.5
NumberofOffspringSurvivingtoFledging
PC3 (Relative Proportions)
Male Odor...
PC1 PC2 PC3 PC4
1-Decanol 0.131 0.927 -0.078 -0.142
1-Undecanol 0.257 0.925 -0.081 -0.138
1-Dodecanol 0.63 0.663 -0.251 0....
-0.8
-0.6
-0.4
-0.2
0
0.2
0.4
0.6
Male Female
PC3Score
Sex
Volatiles contributing
to PC3 are
associated with sex
differenc...
Photo by Flickr user wvsaww
Absolute
measurements of
volatile compounds
Concentrations
change
seasonally
Total amount
may ...
0
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
-2 -1 0 1 2 3 4
NumberofSocialOffspringSurvivingtoFledging
PC1 (Absolute Concentration)
Male Odor and Ap...
Volatiles associated with RS in
males (Absolute concentrations)
PC1
1-Decanol 0.203
1-Undecanol 0.283
1-Dodecanol 0.486
1-...
Pearson’s correlation = 0.558, p = 0.025
n=16
0
1
2
3
4
5
6
-2 -1 0 1 2
Numberextra-pairoffspringinnest
PC3 (Absolute Conc...
Photo by Flickr user Dave W
Conclusion
s
Odor is a strong
predictor of RS
in both males
and females
Females may
evaluate
p...
Acknowledgments
Milos Novotny
Helena Soini
The Ketterson Lab and
United Junco Workers
National Science
Foundation
Indiana ...
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Whittaker abs2012 odor_predictsrs

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Preliminary data presented at Animal Behavior Society meeting in 2012. Paper is now published in Animal Behaviour: http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0003347213003473

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  • Pop-up PCA graph to reinforce the differences
  • Have T graph pop up
  • Were there other correlates (morph characteristics) associated with RS or loss of paternity? (eg tail white, size)Be careful about saying ‘Strong correlation’ – p value not that strong – say highly correlatedJust do Fledging day graphs for males – my awesome circles are confusing. For female, do day 6 and say that it suggests she can produce more offspring (eg is more fecund), not necessarily anything about her parenting ability
  • Whittaker abs2012 odor_predictsrs

    1. 1. Songbird Odor Predicts Reproductive Success Danielle J. Whittaker Nicole M. Gerlach Ellen D. Ketterson BEACONAn NSF Center for the Study of Evolution in Action Photo by Marine Drouilly
    2. 2. Preen oil is an odor source Oil secreted from the uropygial gland contains volatile compounds that give birds an odor
    3. 3. Volatile compound concentration increases during breeding season 0 2 4 6 8 10 12 14 16 18 Concentration Breeding Non-breeding Soini et al 2007, J. Chemical Whittaker et al 2011, J. Chemical -5 -4 -3 -2 -1 0 1 2 3 1 (n=50) 2 (n=28) 3 (n=27) 4 (n=27) Week (sample size) 1 (n=21) 2 (n=10) 3 (n=11) 4 (n=12) Week (sample size) Decanol Undecanol Dodecanol Tridecanol Tetradecanol Pentadecanol Hexadecanol -6 -5 -4 -3 -2 -1 0 lnconcentration Undecanone Dodecanone Tridecanone Tetradecanone Pentadecanone -4 -3 -2 -1 0 Dodecanoic Acid Tetradecanoic Acid Hexadecanoic Acid Methyl Ketones Carboxylic Acids Linear Alcohols Males Females
    4. 4. Odor varies with sex and population MANOVA Sex p<0.001 Population p=0.022 Sex * Population p=0.03 Whittaker et al. 2010, Behavioral
    5. 5. Birds can detect and differentiate among odors Whittaker et al. 2011, Behavioral Ecology
    6. 6. Does odor predict reproductive success?
    7. 7. Photo by Flickr user Enjoy Every San Dark-eyed Juncos (Junco hyemalis) Seasonal breeders Socially monogamous ~30% extra-pair fertilization (EPF) rate Females incubate eggs, both males and females feed nestlings
    8. 8. Field Methods Mountain Lake Biological Station, VA Summer 2008 Captured birds for measurements, bl ood samples, and preen oil Monitored nests Photo by Dustin Reichard
    9. 9. Photo by Dawn O’Neal Lab Methods Genotyped at 8 microsatellite loci to assess parentage Analyzed chemical composition of preen oil with GC-MS 15 volatile compounds
    10. 10. Photo by Flickr user wvsaww Relative proportions of volatile compounds Previous studies found relationships between relative proportions and sex, population differences More “male-like” and “female-like” blends due to different proportions
    11. 11. PC1 PC2 PC3 PC4 1-Decanol 0.131 0.927 -0.078 -0.142 1-Undecanol 0.257 0.925 -0.081 -0.138 1-Dodecanol 0.63 0.663 -0.251 0.1 1-Tridecanol 0.805 0.123 0.115 0.015 1-Tetradecanol 0.663 -0.548 -0.292 -0.078 1-Pentadecanol 0.486 -0.402 0.425 -0.14 1-Hexadecanol 0.494 -0.801 0.016 -0.01 2-undecanone -0.043 -0.081 0.066 0.971 2-dodecanone -0.112 -0.075 0.156 0.96 2-tridecanone 0.147 0.009 0.89 0.284 2-tetradecanone -0.008 -0.016 0.727 0.618 2-pentadecanone 0.193 -0.162 0.935 -0.049 DodecanoicAcid -0.955 -0.05 -0.156 0.187 TetradecanoicAcid -0.98 -0.041 -0.147 0.029 HexadecanoicAcid -0.964 -0.036 -0.172 0.029 VARIANCE EXPLAINED 32.82 22.11 17.70 16.29 Principal Components Analysis: Relative Proportions
    12. 12. 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 -1.5 -1 -0.5 0 0.5 Numberofoffspringproduced PC3 (Relative Proportions) Female Odor and Reproductive Success Pearson’s correlation = -0.639, p = 0.019 n = 13
    13. 13. 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 -1.5 -1 -0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 2 2.5 NumberofOffspringSurvivingtoFledging PC3 (Relative Proportions) Male Odor and Genetic Reproductive Success Pearson’s correlation = 0.572, p = 0.005 n=22
    14. 14. PC1 PC2 PC3 PC4 1-Decanol 0.131 0.927 -0.078 -0.142 1-Undecanol 0.257 0.925 -0.081 -0.138 1-Dodecanol 0.63 0.663 -0.251 0.1 1-Tridecanol 0.805 0.123 0.115 0.015 1-Tetradecanol 0.663 -0.548 -0.292 -0.078 1-Pentadecanol 0.486 -0.402 0.425 -0.14 1-Hexadecanol 0.494 -0.801 0.016 -0.01 2-undecanone -0.043 -0.081 0.066 0.971 2-dodecanone -0.112 -0.075 0.156 0.96 2-tridecanone 0.147 0.009 0.89 0.284 2-tetradecanone -0.008 -0.016 0.727 0.618 2-pentadecanone 0.193 -0.162 0.935 -0.049 DodecanoicAcid -0.955 -0.05 -0.156 0.187 TetradecanoicAcid -0.98 -0.041 -0.147 0.029 HexadecanoicAcid -0.964 -0.036 -0.172 0.029 VARIANCE EXPLAINED 32.82 22.11 17.70 16.29 Principal Components Analysis: Relative Proportions
    15. 15. -0.8 -0.6 -0.4 -0.2 0 0.2 0.4 0.6 Male Female PC3Score Sex Volatiles contributing to PC3 are associated with sex differences. 2-tridecanone 2-tetradecanone 2-pentadecanone More “male-like” males have higher RS More “female-like” females have higher 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 -1.5 -1 -0.5 0 0.5 PC3 (Relative Proportions) 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 -2 -1 0 1 2 3 NumberofGeneticOffspring PC3 (Relative Proportions) * One-way ANOVA, p = 0.04
    16. 16. Photo by Flickr user wvsaww Absolute measurements of volatile compounds Concentrations change seasonally Total amount may convey information 0 2 4 6 8 10 12 14 16 18 Concentration Breeding Non-breeding
    17. 17. 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 -2 -1 0 1 2 3 4 NumberofSocialOffspringSurvivingtoFledging PC1 (Absolute Concentration) Male Odor and Apparent Reproductive Success Pearson’s correlation = 0.512, p = 0.015 n=22
    18. 18. Volatiles associated with RS in males (Absolute concentrations) PC1 1-Decanol 0.203 1-Undecanol 0.283 1-Dodecanol 0.486 1-Tridecanol 0.695 1-Tetradecanol 0.864 1-Pentadecanol 0.884 1-Hexadecanol 0.929 2-undecanone 0.08 2-dodecanone 0.085 2-tridecanone 0.675 2-tetradecanone 0.675 2-pentadecanone 0.815 Dodecanoic Acid -0.003 TetradecanoicAcid -0.034 HexadecanoicAcid 0.017 VARIANCE EXPLAINED 32.145 But what are these?! Associated with “maleness” – more “male-like,” more RS! Photo by Flickr user Super Ba
    19. 19. Pearson’s correlation = 0.558, p = 0.025 n=16 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 -2 -1 0 1 2 Numberextra-pairoffspringinnest PC3 (Absolute Concentration) -0.5 0 0.5 1 1.5 Male Female PC3(Absolute) Odor predicts paternity loss More “female-like” males lose more paternity * One-way ANOVA, p< 0.001 PC3 Dodecanoic Acid 0.911 Tetradecanoic Acid 0.952 Hexadecanoic Acid 0.928 VARIANCE EXPLAINED 19.699
    20. 20. Photo by Flickr user Dave W Conclusion s Odor is a strong predictor of RS in both males and females Females may evaluate potential social mates and EPF mates using different cues No other traits correlated
    21. 21. Acknowledgments Milos Novotny Helena Soini The Ketterson Lab and United Junco Workers National Science Foundation Indiana University Faculty Research Support Program Indiana Academy of Science American Philosophical Society BEACONAn NSF Center for the Study of Evolution in Action Photo by Marine Drouilly
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