Year: 1978 Source: Animal Behavior, v.26, (1978), p.79-96 SIEC No: 20030740

Kin selection & inclusive fitness concepts are used to formulate a general theory accounting for the phenomenon of brood reduction in birds. The theory shows that as starvation mortality increases, selection favours first fratricide, then fratricide plus infanticide, & finally fratricide, infanticide & suicide (by the nestling with the shortest life expectancy). The theory is discussed. (91 refs)