Schooling preferences for familiar fish in the guppy, Poecilia reticulata

A. E. Magurran*, B. H. Seghers, P. W. Shaw, G. R. Carvalho

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

82 Citations (Scopus)


Although schooling behaviour is an important antipredator response of guppies (Poecilia reticulata) in Trinidad it is not known whether fish elect to school with particular individuals. Familiarity is a simple mechanism that could lead to non‐random associations within schools. In this paper we test the idea that prior experience of particular individuals influences the choice of partners during schooling. We show (in a laboratory study) that female guppies prefer to associate with familiar individuals. However, we are unable to detect any schooling preference for unfamiliar females from the same population.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)401-406
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Fish Biology
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Sept 1994


  • individual recognition
  • partner preference
  • Poecilia reticulata
  • schooling behaviour


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