Article: article from journal or magazin.
An ecomorphological analysis of the determinants of mating success
Biological Journal of the Linnean Society
Investigating the factors affecting the strength of sexual selection is important for understanding the evolution of sex-specific morphological and behavioural traits. Traditionally, sexual selection studies focus on male ornaments, although recent evidence indicates that sexual selection mechanisms also target organismal performance. In the present study, we investigated the role of sexually dimorphic morphological and performance traits of the common (viviparous) lizard (Zootoca vivipara, Jacquin 1787) with respect to determining mating behaviour. Using an experimental set-up controlling for size differences, we found that males with longer tails had a higher probability of mating a female. Unexpectedly, males with lower bite forces had an advantage over males with higher bite forces, whereas males with bigger heads copulated for a longer time with the female. This shows that predicting mating success is not straightforward and is sometimes counterintuitive because a longer tail appears to be beneficial, whereas biting harder is not, for male Z. vivipara in a male-female interaction context
lacertidae, lizards, mating behaviour, morphometrics, sexual selection, whole animal performance
Web of science
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