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Quantifying male attractiveness and mating behaviour through phenotypic size manipulation in the trinidadian guppy, Poecilia reticulata

Magellan, K; Pettersson, Lars LU and Magurran, A E (2005) In Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology 58(4). p.366-374
Abstract
Although many studies have examined the effects of male size on attractiveness and mating behaviour, few have taken genetic background into consideration. Phenotypic manipulation permits the experimental adjustment of morphological traits while keeping genetic background constant. Here, male guppies, Poecilia reticulata, an ideal model for this type of manipulation, were raised at different temperatures to produce sibling pairs that differed in size. These were then used to investigate male mating behaviour and male attractiveness, assessed through female mate choice, in relation to this size dimorphism. Further, male-male competition, which is intrinsic to male mating behaviour, is also likely to be affected by their size. Through the use... (More)
Although many studies have examined the effects of male size on attractiveness and mating behaviour, few have taken genetic background into consideration. Phenotypic manipulation permits the experimental adjustment of morphological traits while keeping genetic background constant. Here, male guppies, Poecilia reticulata, an ideal model for this type of manipulation, were raised at different temperatures to produce sibling pairs that differed in size. These were then used to investigate male mating behaviour and male attractiveness, assessed through female mate choice, in relation to this size dimorphism. Further, male-male competition, which is intrinsic to male mating behaviour, is also likely to be affected by their size. Through the use of repeated measures analyses we demonstrate that females significantly prefer larger males and male size and competition significantly affect several aspects of male mating behaviour. Larger siblings perform more sneaky mating attempts and spend more time chasing females. The frequencies of both these behaviours increase with competition. While display frequency is unaffected by male size and competition, display duration and the amount of time spent attending females are reduced in the presence of competitors. This study highlights the use of phenotypic manipulation as a valuable tool for investigating behavioural interactions and confirms that both male size and competition are significant factors in the guppy mating system. (Less)
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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
in
Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology
volume
58
issue
4
pages
366 - 374
publisher
Springer
external identifiers
  • wos:000230705600005
  • scopus:22844449219
ISSN
1432-0762
DOI
10.1007/s00265-005-0950-6
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
45ac776e-5129-4cff-8074-084e4a5bc4ae (old id 145334)
date added to LUP
2007-06-25 15:01:36
date last changed
2017-06-25 03:35:20
@article{45ac776e-5129-4cff-8074-084e4a5bc4ae,
  abstract     = {Although many studies have examined the effects of male size on attractiveness and mating behaviour, few have taken genetic background into consideration. Phenotypic manipulation permits the experimental adjustment of morphological traits while keeping genetic background constant. Here, male guppies, Poecilia reticulata, an ideal model for this type of manipulation, were raised at different temperatures to produce sibling pairs that differed in size. These were then used to investigate male mating behaviour and male attractiveness, assessed through female mate choice, in relation to this size dimorphism. Further, male-male competition, which is intrinsic to male mating behaviour, is also likely to be affected by their size. Through the use of repeated measures analyses we demonstrate that females significantly prefer larger males and male size and competition significantly affect several aspects of male mating behaviour. Larger siblings perform more sneaky mating attempts and spend more time chasing females. The frequencies of both these behaviours increase with competition. While display frequency is unaffected by male size and competition, display duration and the amount of time spent attending females are reduced in the presence of competitors. This study highlights the use of phenotypic manipulation as a valuable tool for investigating behavioural interactions and confirms that both male size and competition are significant factors in the guppy mating system.},
  author       = {Magellan, K and Pettersson, Lars and Magurran, A E},
  issn         = {1432-0762},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {4},
  pages        = {366--374},
  publisher    = {Springer},
  series       = {Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology},
  title        = {Quantifying male attractiveness and mating behaviour through phenotypic size manipulation in the trinidadian guppy, Poecilia reticulata},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s00265-005-0950-6},
  volume       = {58},
  year         = {2005},
}