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dc.contributor.authorBlas, Julio-
dc.contributor.authorJovani, Roger-
dc.identifier.citationJ. EVO L. B I OL. 17 (2 004 ) 294 –3 01es_ES
dc.description.abstractPhysiological stress during ontogeny is known to cause abnormalities in keratin structures of vertebrates, but little is known about if and how organisms have evolved mechanisms to reduce the negative effects of these abnormalities. Stress experienced during avian feather growth is known to lead to the formation of fault bars, and thereby to the weakening of feathers because of shortage and slimming of barbules. Here we propose and test a new hypothesis (the ‘fault bar allocation hypothesis’) according to which birds should have evolved adaptive strategies to counteract this evolutionary pressure. In particular, we predicted and tested the idea that in flying birds, natural selection should have selected for mechanisms to reduce fault bar load on feathers with high strength requirements during flight. Data on the growth of feathers of nestling white storks (Ciconia ciconia) revealed a consistent allocation of more, and more intense, fault bars in innermost than in outermost wing feathers as predicted by our hypothesis. Moreover, the same pattern emerged from feathers of adult storks. We discuss the generality of our results, and suggest avenues for further investigations in this area.es_ES
dc.publisherJohn Wiley & Sonses_ES
dc.subjectbirds; Ciconia ciconia; fault bar allocation hypothesis; feathers; flight; stresses_ES
dc.titleAdaptive allocation of stress-induced deformities on bird featherses_ES
dc.description.peerreviewedPeer reviewedes_ES
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