Chemical communication, the transfer of information from an emitter to a receiver via molecular signals, occurs in all animal phyla. Although such processes have been largely overlooked in birds, recent results suggest that chemical signals may play a more significant role than previously assumed in the social lives of birds. Procellariiform seabirds, and burrow-nesting petrels in particular, are appropriate models to investigate these questions. They indeed possess a well-developed olfactory anatomy, a noticeable musky scent and a life-history which favours the evolution of olfactorymediated social behaviours (Chapter1). We have explored the role of chemical signals in the ecology of the blue petrel (Halobaena caerulea), a burrow-nesting seabird from the Subantarctic Ocean, using existing and innovative methods from field ornithology, analytical chemistry and multivariate statistics (Chapter 2).
|Qualification||Doctor of Philosophy|
|Publication status||Unpublished - 2010|