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Reproductive asynchrony within social groups of female eastern wild turkeys
  • Erin Ulrey,
  • Michael Chamberlain,
  • Bret Collier
Erin Ulrey
University of Georgia Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources

Corresponding Author:[email protected]

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Michael Chamberlain
University of Georgia
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Bret Collier
Louisiana State University
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Eastern wild turkeys (Meleagris gallopavo silvestris) exhibit social hierarchies wherein dominance is established through agnostic interactions within social groups. When dominant individuals effectively monopolize reproductive opportunities, asynchronous breeding can occur, which may disproportionately influence individual fitness within social groups. For females, higher ranked individuals may witness reproductive advantages associated with earlier nesting than subordinate conspecifics. We evaluated reproductive synchrony within and between presumed social groups of GPS-tagged female eastern wild turkeys by inferring female social rank based on timing of nest initiation. We examined 30 social groups with an average of 7 females per group (range 2 - 15) during 2014-2019 in west-central Louisiana. We found that the estimated number of days between first nest initiation across females within social groups varied between 3-7 days across years, and the number of days between nest attempts was lower for successful than failed attempts. Our findings suggest that social hierarchies may influence reproductive success in female wild turkeys, and we postulate that social constraints could cause variation in timing of nest initiation for females within social groups.
26 Oct 2022Submitted to Ecology and Evolution
28 Oct 2022Submission Checks Completed
28 Oct 2022Assigned to Editor
03 Nov 2022Reviewer(s) Assigned
01 Dec 2022Review(s) Completed, Editorial Evaluation Pending
05 Dec 2022Editorial Decision: Revise Minor
06 Mar 20231st Revision Received
08 Mar 2023Submission Checks Completed
08 Mar 2023Assigned to Editor
08 Mar 2023Review(s) Completed, Editorial Evaluation Pending
13 Mar 2023Reviewer(s) Assigned
04 Apr 2023Editorial Decision: Revise Minor
17 May 20232nd Revision Received
18 May 2023Submission Checks Completed
18 May 2023Assigned to Editor
18 May 2023Review(s) Completed, Editorial Evaluation Pending
23 May 2023Editorial Decision: Accept