Socially monogamous male birds are predicted to maximise their reproductive success by pursuing extra-pair copulations (EPCs) while engaging in anti-cuckoldry behaviour such as mate guarding. In the stitchbird, Notiomystis cincta, high levels of forced EPCs and a high proportion of nestlings resulting from extra- pair fertilisations lead to the prediction that males of this species should exhibit intense paternity guarding behaviours.
In a polygynous mating system, males frequently compete by locating and defending sites with resources essential to female survival and reproduction. We investigated seasonal changes in site occupancy in a sexually dimorphic, harem-forming insect, the Auckland tree weta (Hemideina thoracica). First we established artificial cavities as diurnal refuge cavities and potential harem guarding sites.