Food or sex: males and females in a sex role reversed pipefish have different interests
2006 (English)In: Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology, ISSN 0340-5443, E-ISSN 1432-0762, Vol. 60, no 2, 281-287 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
In a sex role reversed pipefish, Syngnathus typhle, we found that basic life history allocations were directly influenced by sexual selection. We investigated time allocation to foraging and mating, respectively, in a choice experiment, giving males and females, of small or large body size, a choice between food and a potential partner. We found that males were more interested in foraging than mating, i.e., were more frequently observed in front of the food than in front of the partner, whereas females were more interested in the potential partner. This reflects sexual selection operating differently on the two sexes, as males and females are relatively similar in other life history traits, such as growth, mortality, age of maturity, dispersal, and parental expenditure. Moreover, large individuals allocated more time to mating activities, small to feeding. Individuals more interested in mating compared to food were subsequently more critical when given a choice between a large (high-quality) and a small (low-quality) partner, whereas individuals more interested in food were not selective. These findings are consistent with our predictions: sex-role reversed males can be relatively sure of achieving one or more matings, and should allocate more time to feeding and, hence, to parental investment, growth and/or future reproduction. Females, on the other hand, have more uncertain mating prospects and should allocate time to imminent reproductive activities, thereby foregoing other life history traits such as growth and future egg production. By this, they also sacrifice future fecundity and attractiveness.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2006. Vol. 60, no 2, 281-287 p.
Life history, Sex role reversal, Syngnathus typhle, Pipefish
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-22966DOI: 10.1007/s00265-006-0166-4OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-22966DiVA: diva2:50739