Article: article from journal or magazin.
Melanin-based coloration in juvenile kestrels (Falco tinnunculus) covaries with anti-predatory personality traits
Recent studies have shown that melanin-based coloration is associated with the ability to cope with stressful environments, potentially explaining why coloration covaries with anti-predator behaviours, boldness and docility. To investigate whether these relationships are consistent across species, we performed a study in the European kestrel (Falco tinnunculus). Similar to our results found previously in the barn owl (Tyto alba), nestling kestrels displaying a larger sub-terminal black tail band stayed on their back longer (tonic immobility test) and breathed at a lower rate than individuals with a smaller black band when handled. However, in contrast to barn owls, nestling kestrels with a larger black tail band were more aggressive and more agitated. Our results strengthen the hypothesis that melanin coloration is related to stress response and in turn to the reaction to predators, a very important personality trait (i.e. boldness).
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