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Ontogeny of sexual dimorphism and phenotypic integration in heritable morphs

Author:
  • Jessica Abbott
  • Erik Svensson
Publishing year: 2008
Language: English
Pages: 103-121
Publication/Series: Evolutionary Ecology
Volume: 22
Issue: 1
Document type: Journal article
Publisher: Springer

Abstract english

In this study we investigated the developmental basis of adult phenotypes in a non-model organism, a polymorphic damselfly (Ischnura elegans) with three female colour morphs. This polymorphic species presents an ideal opportunity to study intraspecific variation in growth trajectories, morphological variation in size and shape during the course of ontogeny, and to relate these juvenile differences to the phenotypic differences of the discrete adult phenotypes; the two sexes and the three female morphs. We raised larvae of different families in individual enclosures in the laboratory, and traced morphological changes during the course of ontogeny. We used principal components analysis to examine the effects of Sex, Maternal morph, and Own morph on body size and body shape. We also investigated the larval fitness consequences of variation in size and shape by relating these factors to emergence success. Females grew faster than males and were larger as adults, and there was sexual dimorphism in body shape in both larval and adult stages. There were also significant effects of both maternal morph and own morph on growth rate and body shape in the larval stage. There were significant differences in body shape, but not body size, between the adult female morphs, indicating phenotypic integration between colour, melanin patterning, and body shape. Individuals that emerged successfully grew faster and had different body shape in the larval stage, indicating internal (non-ecological) selection on larval morphology. Overall, morphological differences between individuals at the larval stage carried over to the adult stage. Thus, selection in the larval stage can potentially result in correlated responses in adult phenotypes and vice versa.

Keywords

  • Biological Sciences
  • antagonistic selection
  • alternative phenotypes
  • complex life-cycle
  • correlational selection
  • sexual conflict
  • mimicry

Other

Published
  • ISSN: 1573-8477
erik_svensson
E-mail: erik.svensson [at] biol.lu.se

Professor

Evolutionary ecology

+46 46 222 38 19

E-B254

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Centre for Animal Movement Research
Evolutionary Ecology, Department of Biology
Ecology building S-223 62 Lund Sweden