The energetic and survival costs of growth in free-ranging chipmunks

Careau, Vincent, Bergeron, Patrick, Garant, Dany, Reale, Denis, Speakman, John R. and Humphries, Murray M. 2013, The energetic and survival costs of growth in free-ranging chipmunks, Oecologia, vol. 171, no. 1, pp. 11-23, doi: 10.1007/s00442-012-2385-x.

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Title The energetic and survival costs of growth in free-ranging chipmunks
Author(s) Careau, Vincent
Bergeron, Patrick
Garant, Dany
Reale, Denis
Speakman, John R.
Humphries, Murray M.
Journal name Oecologia
Volume number 171
Issue number 1
Start page 11
End page 23
Total pages 13
Publisher Springer
Place of publication Berlin, Germany
Publication date 2013-01
ISSN 0029-8549
Keyword(s) allocation
Summary The growth/survival trade-off is a fundamental aspect of life-history evolution that is often explained by the direct energetic requirement for growth that cannot be allocated into maintenance. However, there is currently no empirical consensus on whether fast-growing individuals have higher resting metabolic rates at thermoneutrality (RMRt) than slow growers. Moreover, the link between growth rate and daily energy expenditure (DEE) has never been tested in a wild endotherm. We assessed the energetic and survival costs of growth in juvenile eastern chipmunks (Tamias striatus) during a year of low food abundance by quantifying post-emergent growth rate (n = 88), RMRt (n = 66), DEE (n = 20), and overwinter survival. Both RMRt and DEE were significantly and positively related to growth rate. The effect size was stronger for DEE than RMRt, suggesting that the energy cost of growth in wild animals is more likely to be related to the maintenance of a higher foraging rate (included in DEE) than to tissue accretion (included in RMRt). Fast growers were significantly less likely to survive the following winter compared to slow growers. Juveniles with high or low RMRt were less likely to survive winter than juveniles with intermediate RMRt. In contrast, DEE was unrelated to survival. In addition, botfly parasitism simultaneously decreased growth rate and survival, suggesting that the energetic budget of juveniles was restricted by the simultaneous costs of growth and parasitism. Although the biology of the species (seed-storing hibernator) and the context of our study (constraining environmental conditions) were ideally combined to reveal a direct relationship between current use of energy and future availability, it remains unclear whether the energetic cost of growth was directly responsible for reduced survival.
Language eng
DOI 10.1007/s00442-012-2385-x
Field of Research 060201 Behavioural Ecology
060208 Terrestrial Ecology
060308 Life Histories
Socio Economic Objective 970105 Expanding Knowledge in the Environmental Sciences
HERDC Research category C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2013, Springer
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