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Data and code for Heterogeneous selection on exploration behavior within and among West European populations of a passerine bird

Citation

Mouchet, Alexia et al. (2021), Data and code for Heterogeneous selection on exploration behavior within and among West European populations of a passerine bird, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.mkkwh70z8

Abstract

Heterogeneous selection is often proposed as a key mechanism maintaining repeatable behavioral variation (“animal personality”) in wild populations. Previous studies largely focused on temporal variation in selection within single populations. The relative importance of spatial versus temporal variation remains unexplored, despite these processes having distinct effects on local adaptation. Using data from >3500 great tits (Parus major) and 35 nest box plots situated within five West-European populations monitored over 4-18 years, we show that selection on exploration behavior varies primarily spatially, across populations, and study plots within populations. Exploration was, simultaneously, selectively neutral in the average population and year. These findings imply that spatial variation in selection may represent a primary mechanism maintaining animal personalities, likely promoting the evolution of local adaptation, phenotype-dependent dispersal, and nonrandom settlement. Selection also varied within populations among years, which may counteract local adaptation. Our study underlines the importance of combining multiple spatiotemporal scales in the study of behavioral adaptation.

Methods

Data from five different great tit (Parus major) populations were compiled. Data for the main statistical analyses for each population are in two separate files: one file with main data (fitness, behavior, study plots and years) and one file with breeding density. Data for the statistical analysis comparing the behavior of immigrant vs. locally recruited yearlings are in a third file.

Also, uploaded R scripts to conduct analyses from the manuscript (one for main analyses and one for immigrant behavior analysis).