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Ecology and Behavior of Chickadees and Titmicean integrated approach$
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Ken A. Otter

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780198569992

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2007

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198569992.001.0001

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Photoperiodism and the annual cycle of black-capped chickadees

Photoperiodism and the annual cycle of black-capped chickadees

(p.43) CHAPTER 4 Photoperiodism and the annual cycle of black-capped chickadees
Ecology and Behavior of Chickadees and Titmice

Leslie S. Phillmore

Scott A. MacDougall-Shackleton

Oxford University Press

This chapter assesses the influence of photoperiod as a mechanism for regulating annual cycles. In particular, the interactive influence of changing light levels on regulating the annual hormone cycles that influence the development of gonads (breeding regulation) and neural structures associated with both food caching and song control is reviewed. The focus is on photoperiodism and seasonality in Parids, citing recent studies of black-capped chickadees. These studies include studies on the effects of photoperiod on reproduction, on singing and the neural system controlling song, and on food-storing and the hippocampus. Recent studies have revealed that black-capped chickadees exhibit photoperiodic responses and photorefractoriness similar to many other songbird species. However, seasonal changes in the brain have produced mixed results, especially when comparing birds caught from the wild with birds held in captivity.

Keywords:   black-capped chickadees, annual cycle, photoperiodism, reproduction, seasonality, food storing, hippocampus

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