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Data from: Seasonal variation in male alternative reproductive tactics

Citation

Monroe, Melanie J. et al. (2016), Data from: Seasonal variation in male alternative reproductive tactics, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.3m774

Abstract

Genetic parentage analyses reveal considerable diversity in alternative reproductive behaviours (e.g. sneaking) in many taxa. However, little is known about whether these behaviours vary seasonally and between populations. Here, we investigate seasonal variation in male reproductive behaviours in a population of two-spotted gobies (Gobiusculus flavescens) in Norway. Male two-spotted gobies guard nests, attract females and care for fertilized eggs. We collected clutches and nest-guarding males early and late in the breeding season in artificial nests and used microsatellite markers to reconstruct parentage from a subset of offspring from each nest. We hypothesized that mating, reproductive success and sneaking should be more prevalent early in the breeding season when competition for mates among males is predicted to be higher. However, parentage analyses revealed similar values of mating, reproductive success and high frequencies of successful sneaking early (30% of nests) and late (27% of nests) in the season. We also found that multiple females with eggs in the same nest were fertilized by one or more sneaker males, indicating that some males in this population engage in a satellite strategy. We contrast our results to previous work that demonstrates low levels of cuckoldry in a population in Sweden. Our results demonstrate marked stability in both the genetic mating system and male alternative reproductive tactics over the breeding season. However, sneaking rates may vary geographically within a species, likely due to local selection influencing ecological factors encountered at different locations.

Usage Notes

Funding

National Science Foundation, Award: OISE-0701086

Location

Bergen
Norway