A comparison of the impact of direct and indirect benefits of mating decisions in the rose bitterling (Rhodeus Ocellatus)

Muna Agbali, Rowena Spence, Martin Reichard, Carl Smith*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Research on sexual selection has tended to focus on indirect benefits of female mating decisions, and few attempts have been made to quantify the relative effect of direct and indirect selection simultaneously. Here we compared direct and indirect selection on female mating decisions in the rose bitterling (Rhodeus ocellatus), a fish with a resource-based mating system, using experimental treatments with equivalent consequences for female reproductive success. Direct selection was varied by manipulating the quality of sites available to females for oviposition, and indirect selection by presenting females with males of known genetic compatibility. Manipulating the strength of direct and indirect selection had specific, quantified consequences for embryo survival during incubation. There was a significant effect of both direct and indirect selection on female mating decisions, though direct selection accounted for more variance in female oviposition rate compared with indirect. No interaction between direct and indirect selection was detected. Although effects on female reproductive success were additive, selection for direct mate choice benefits appears to be stronger than for indirect benefits. A possible explanation for weaker selection on indirect benefits in the study species is because females are constrained in making mate choice decisions through alternative male mating tactics, which generate a sexual conflict.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)279-288
Number of pages10
JournalIsrael Journal of Ecology and Evolution
Volume58
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2012

Keywords

  • bitterling
  • direct selection
  • indirect selection
  • mate choice
  • oviposition
  • Rhodeus ocellatus
  • sexual selection

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