Effects of Divergent Selection for Fear of Humans on Behaviour in Red Junglefowl
2016 (English)In: PLoS ONE, ISSN 1932-6203, E-ISSN 1932-6203, Vol. 11, no 11, 1-12 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Domestication has caused a range of similar phenotypic changes across taxa, relating to physiology, morphology and behaviour. It has been suggested that this recurring domesticated phenotype may be a result of correlated responses to a central trait, namely increased tameness. We selected Red Junglefowl, the ancestors of domesticated chickens, during five generations for reduced fear of humans. This caused a marked and significant response in tameness, and previous studies have found correlated effects on growth, metabolism, reproduction, and some behaviour not directly selected for. Here, we report the results from a series of behavioural tests carried out on the initial parental generation (P0) and the fifth selected generation (S5), focusing on behaviour not functionally related to tameness, in order to study any correlated effects. Birds were tested for fear of humans, social reinstatement tendency, open field behaviour at two different ages, foraging/exploration, response to a simulated aerial predator attack and tonic immobility. In S5, there were no effects of selection on foraging/exploration or tonic immobility, while in the social reinstatement and open field tests there were significant interactions between selection and sex. In the aerial predator test, there were significant main effects of selection, indicating that fear of humans may represent a general wariness towards predators. In conclusion, we found only small correlated effects on behaviours not related to the tameness trait selected for, in spite of them showing high genetic correlations to fear of humans in a previous study on the same population. This suggests that species-specific behaviour is generally resilient to changes during domestication.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
PLOS , 2016. Vol. 11, no 11, 1-12 p.
Developmental Biology Genetics
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-132742DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0166075PubMedID: 27851792OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-132742DiVA: diva2:1048848