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8 p, 752.8 KB Environmental variation and the evolution of large brains in birds / Sayol i Altarriba, Ferran (Centre de Recerca Ecològica i Aplicacions Forestals) ; Maspons, Joan (Centre de Recerca Ecològica i Aplicacions Forestals) ; Lapiedra i González, Oriol (Harvard University. Department of Organismic and Evolutionary Biology) ; Iwaniuk, Andrew N. (University of Lethbridge. Department of Neuroscience) ; Székely, Tamás (University of Bath. Department of Biology and Biochemistry) ; Sol, Daniel (Centre de Recerca Ecològica i Aplicacions Forestals)
Environmental variability has long been postulated as a major selective force in the evolution of large brains. However, assembling evidence for this hypothesis has proved difficult. Here, by combining brain size information for over 1,200 bird species with remote-sensing analyses a to estimate temporal variation in ecosystem productivity, we show that larger brains (relative to body size) are more likely to occur in species exposed to larger environmental variation throughout their geographic range. [...]
2016 - 10.1038/ncomms13971
Nature communications, Vol. 7 (des. 2016) , art. 13971  

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