Reproductive Phenology of Large Mammals

  • Jeffrey Kerby
  • Eric PostEmail author


Many large herbivores, specifically ungulates, display a distinct seasonality in their reproductive phenology. Focusing on empirical studies of caribou/reindeer, moose, and red deer, we illustrate the influence of abiotic (i.e. climatic) and biotic (i.e., density dependent) factors on the timing of calving–an important life-history trait affecting population dynamics. Furthermore, we clarify the distinction between the concepts of timing and synchrony of births, as well as the difference between long-term (i.e., evolutionary) and proximal influences on these population level traits. These distinctions are essential when interpreting the consequences of variation in the timing of parturition, particularly in the context of changing abiotic seasonality caused by climate change.


North Atlantic Oscillation Birth Date Large Herbivore Arctic Oscillation Plant Phenology 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of BiologyThe Pennsylvania State UniversityUniversity ParkUSA

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