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26-Jun-2017 18:04

The most important determinant of adult mortality was one particular winter season, which affected all ages and sizes equally.Apart from this winter, mortality risk did not differ between the winter and the summer season.Since most hibernating bats have only one offspring per year, increasing annual reproductive output by an additional young would increase investment by 100 percent.On the other hand, fitness could also be maximized by an increased reproductive lifespan, which is achievable using fewer resources.Increasing reproductive lifespan would in turn lead to selection on high rates of adult survival), many of these studies were based on occasional recoveries of marked individuals only.To accurately estimate the effects of individual traits, age, season, or environmental fluctuations between years, studies that follow individuals over their entire lifespan are needed, most studies did not last long enough or were not fine-scaled enough to be able to test the effects on bat mortality of age or of fluctuations in adult survival caused by rare catastrophic events.

The variable year was a factor that controlled for different levels of mortality across the years (mid-April to mid-April), while colony was a factor that controlled for possible differences in the local habitat of the four colonies.

year and colony enter as factors, while age and size are modelled as smooth functions.