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The Evolution of Parental Care$
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Nick J. Royle, Per T. Smiseth, and Mathias Kölliker

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199692576

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: December 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199692576.001.0001

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Paternity, maternity, and parental care

Paternity, maternity, and parental care

Chapter:
(p.189) Chapter 11 Paternity, maternity, and parental care
Source:
The Evolution of Parental Care
Author(s):

Suzanne H. Alonzo

Hope Klug

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199692576.003.0011

The evolution of parental care has attracted widespread attention, motivated in part by the immense variation in patterns of parental care observed among and within taxonomic groups. Key questions are whether and how much care biological parents should provide and how parental effort is affected by multiple paternity and maternity. While it has been generally argued that individuals should invest more in care of young when parentage is more certain, empirical results have been mixed, implying that the relationship between maternity or paternity and care may require thinking about how mating patterns are connected to parental effort. This chapter first reviews the general expectations, specific theoretical predictions, and empirical patterns relating paternity (or maternity) to parental care. It then examines how the relationship between mating and care more generally relates to our understanding of sexual selection and mating systems, and the general implications of this understanding for social evolution and sexual selection. After summarizing the current understanding of these issues, the chapter discusses future directions for research and what questions remain unasked and unanswered.

Keywords:   parental effort, paternity, sexual selection, maternity, mating systems

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