Abstracts (first author)
Mutual ornaments in pied flycatchers: geographical patterns of assortative mating
In many sexually dichromatic taxa, females express, albeit often to a lower degree, male-like traits. Fitness consequences and signaling content of (mutual) ornamentation are often studied for each sex separately, with the exception of assortative mating studies. Male and female pied flycatchers (Ficedula hypoleuca) have a conspicuous white wing patch that varies in size and ultraviolet reflectance. This trait affects intra- and intersexual social interactions and may signal individual quality. Positive assortativeness is predicted for ornaments that serve similar social signaling functions. Here we investigate assortative mating patterns and their fitness correlates, using wing patch data from several populations across pied flycatchers’ breeding range. Preliminary results show that within-pair similarity in wing patch differs between populations. Together with current work on spatial patterns in selection for this trait in each sex, these results suggest that local environmental and ecological conditions may affect mutual ornaments differently in males and females.