Breeding dispersal strategies following reproductive failure explain low apparent survival of immigrant Temminck's stints

Autores UPV
Revista OIKOS


In some animal populations, immigrants have lower survival than philopatric individuals. Costs of dispersal or low phenotypic quality of dispersers may explain the pattern. However, apparent adult survival estimates, which describe real survival combined with site fidelity cannot be separated from permanent emigration. Thus, heterogeneity in breeding dispersal propensities of immigrants and philopatrics can bias fitness correlates of dispersal. Differences in breeding dispersal propensities may be caused by different strategies in response to environmental cues inducing dispersal, such as reproductive success. In such cases, the reported differences between immigrants and philopatric individuals may not reflect true variation in survival. We studied whether dispersal status specific apparent adult survival is associated with reproductive success in a Temminck's stint Calidris temminckii population. We analysed two long term capture-recapture datasets characterised by low and high nest predation levels. Philopatric individuals had higher apparent adult survival than immigrants in both datasets and the difference was highlighted during the high nest predation period. By contrasting return rates between successful and unsuccessful breeders as a proxy for dispersal, we found that unsuccessful immigrants breeding for the first time dispersed more likely than successful immigrants, but such a pattern was not found among philopatric individuals. Our results support the hypothesis that immigrant and philopatric individuals have different breeding dispersal strategies following reproductive failure and that their apparent adult survival differences are at least partly explained by different breeding dispersal propensities. Our results also suggest that the recent decline of the study population reflects a multiple response to increased nest predation through decreased local recruitment and increased emigration. © 2011 The Authors.