Data from: Condition dependence of female choosiness in a field cricket
Judge, Kevin A.; Ting, Janice J.; Gwynne, Darryl T. (2014), Data from: Condition dependence of female choosiness in a field cricket, Dryad, Dataset, https://doi.org/10.5061/dryad.mg6jb
Females generally choose mates that produce the loudest, brightest or most elaborate sexual displays, and these costly male displays are predicted to be condition dependent. However, mate choice itself is a costly behaviour also expected to be condition dependent. Male fall field crickets, Gryllus pennsylvanicus, produce a conspicuous long-distance calling song that attracts females and is condition dependent. In this study, we tested the condition dependence of female preferences (preference function and choosiness) for male calling effort in G. pennsylvanicus. We manipulated female condition by raising crickets from hatching on either a low- or high-quality diet. In a series of two-speaker phonotaxis trials, both low- and high-condition females preferred playbacks reflecting greater calling effort. However, relative to low-condition females, high-condition females took significantly longer to make a choice, were more likely to fail to choose within the time allotted for a phonotaxis trial and significantly increased their latency to choose over the course of multiple trials. We discuss these results with respect to the possibility that female G. pennsylvanicus may be foraging for direct benefits when they choose their mates.