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Determinants of reproductive succes of male sticklebacks in the field and in the laboratory
Goldschmidt, T.; Bakker, T.C.M. (1990). Determinants of reproductive succes of male sticklebacks in the field and in the laboratory. Neth. J. Zool. 40(4): 664-687
In: Netherlands Journal of Zoology. E.J. Brill: Leiden. ISSN 0028-2960, more
Peer reviewed article  

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  • Goldschmidt, T.
  • Bakker, T.C.M.

    Several determinants of reproductive succes of male three-spinned sticklebacks, Gastersteus aculeatus L., have been identified in the laboratory under semi-natural conditions. The impact of these determinants in natural populations is largely unknown. Here we analyse some determinants of reproductive succes in natural Dutch stickleback populations and compare them with those obtained in a laboratory study of van den Assem (1967). Although we fail to affirm a positive correlation between territory size and agression, the determinants of reproductive succes revealed in van den Assem's study are shown also to be of importance under natural conditions. Superior reproductive succes is asociated with large territory size and males with large territories suffer less egg raiding. An enhanced likehood of nest entering by ripe females occurs right after creeping through and this male behaviour is observed more frequently in males with relatively large territories. Further, ripe females are more apt to enter a nest that already contains eggs, and this is not a result of changes in the male's courtship through the presence of eggs in the nest. The functional significance of some behavioural patterns like creeping through, sneaking and egg-raiding is discussed.

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