Data from: Evidence for inbreeding depression in a species with limited opportunity for maternal effects
Cite this dataset
Vega-Trejo, Regina; Head, Megan L.; Jennions, Michael D. (2016). Data from: Evidence for inbreeding depression in a species with limited opportunity for maternal effects [Dataset]. Dryad. https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.3rh76
It is often assumed that mating with close relatives reduces offspring fitness. In such cases, reduced offspring fitness may arise from inbreeding depression (i.e., genetic effects of elevated homozygosity) or from post-mating maternal investment. This can be due to a reduction in female investment after mating with genetically incompatible males (“differential allocation”) or compensation for incompatibility (“reproductive compensation”). Here, we looked at the effects of mating with relatives on offspring fitness in mosquitofish, Gambusia holbrooki. In this species, females are assumed to be nonplacental and to allocate resources to eggs before fertilization, limiting differential allocation. We looked at the effects of mating with a brother or with an unrelated male on brood size, offspring size, gestation period, and early offspring growth. Mating with a relative reduced the number of offspring at birth, but there was no difference in the likelihood of breeding, gestation time, nor in the size or growth of these offspring. We suggest that due to limited potential for maternal effects to influence these traits that any reduction in offspring fitness, or lack thereof, can be explained by inbreeding depression rather than by maternal effects. We highlight the importance of considering the potential role of maternal effects when studying inbreeding depression and encourage further studies in other Poeciliid species with different degrees of placentation to test whether maternal effects mask or amplify any genetic effects of mating with relatives.