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The interval between sexual encounters affect male courtship tactics
Monash University.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-1426-0036
2010 (English)Conference paper, Poster (with or without abstract) (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Courtship displays can enhance male mating success, but are often costly. Thus, instead of courting all females indiscriminately, males could strategically adjust their signalling effort by directing greater courtship towards females of higher reproductive quality. However, plasticity in male courtship intensity remains a largely neglected aspect of sexual selection. Theory predicts that the expression of such plasticity should depend on both the order, and the rate, with which potential mates are encountered. We tested these predictions in a fish, the Australian desert goby, Chlamydogobius eremius. Males preferentially courted the larger of two simultaneously encountered females, probably because larger females are also more fecund. We then investigated male courtship under different sequential scenarios, that is, presenting one female at a time. We found a "previous female effect", with males adjusting their signalling output based on the size of the female they had encountered previously. However, males did not adjust their courtship in this way when the interval between female presentations was longer. Thus, both variation in mate quality, mate encounter rate and previous experiences affected male reproductive decisions. Our findings underscore the importance of considering temporal aspects of mate encounters when trying to understand how mate selection operates in nature.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Perth, Australia, 2010.
National Category
Evolutionary Biology Behavioral Sciences Biology
Research subject
Natural Science, Aquatic Ecology; Natural Science, Evolutionary Biology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:lnu:diva-18798OAI: oai:DiVA.org:lnu-18798DiVA, id: diva2:527884
Conference
International Society of Behavioural Ecology conference
Available from: 2012-05-22 Created: 2012-05-22 Last updated: 2016-05-03Bibliographically approved

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Svensson, P. Andreas

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
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Language
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  • en-US
  • fi-FI
  • nn-NO
  • nn-NB
  • sv-SE
  • Other locale
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Output format
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  • text
  • asciidoc
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