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PhD Students Coffee Time: Javier Ábalos

  • 28 de març de 2019
Javier Ábalos

El próximo jueves 28/03/2019 a las 15:00h en la Sala Reuniones SS6 (Edificio de Cabecera, semisótano), Javier Ábalos, estudiante predoc del grupo de Etología, abordará el tema: "Do colour morphs reflect alternative reproductive strategies in the European common wall lizard (Podarcis muralis)?"

He says:

The adaptive value and persistence of local polymorphisms are often thought to be explained by the existence of alternative reproductive strategies wired up to the morphs. The European common wall lizard, Podarcis muralis, which shows a striking orange-white-yellow ventral colour polymorphism, has attracted particular attention. Here, we present preliminary results from an enclosure experiment carried out in the spring of 2018, in which we performed behavioural observations in ten experimental populations of P. muralis balanced for their sex ratio and morph frequencies. In each experimental enclosure, we installed six wood pallets differing in the amount of cinder-blocks, bricks and stones piled up upon them, and hence in their appeal to lizards. We found no significant differences between male colour morphs in social dominance competition, space use or social interactions with females, nor in mating or reproductive success. Instead, we found that dominance and pallet quality were the prime determinants of male fitness. Overall, our results argue against the traditional assumption that P. muralis colour morphs may function as a chromatic signals informing conspecifics about the signaller’s reproductive strategy.

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