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Metals, oxidative stress and carotenoid-dependent colouration: does metal pollution fade the colour of great tits (Parus major)?

The main focus of this project is to asses the signal value of carotenoid colouration in relation to oxidative stress levels and diet quality in the great tit (Parus major). The great tit has a carotenoid based signal, namely the yellow breast colour. The brightness of this colour is linked to the condition and the quality of the bearer. The research will be conducted in a well known metal pollution gradient. We expect that birds in polluted areas will fade under the influence of metal induced oxidative stress and/or lower food quality.
Date:1 Jan 2008  →  30 Sep 2008
Disciplines:Animal biology