Does maternal stress drive offspring dispersal in an asocial mammal?
Stress is a physiological state experienced by all living organisms which can be passed across generations. The purpose of my study is to understand the consequences of maternal nutritional stress on daughter dispersal behavior (i.e. remain philopatric or disperse away from the natal home range). I address this in a population of golden mantled ground squirrels (GMGS), Callospermophilus lateralis, which has been studied for 30 years at Rocky Mountain Biological Research Laboratory in Gothic, Colorado. These hibernating mammals give birth to their young in burrows and offspring suckle from their ...
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