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Sperm storage and sperm competition across ovarian cycles in the dragon lizard Ctenophorus fordi

Author:
  • Tobias Uller
  • Tonia Schwartz
  • Troy Koglin
  • Mats Olsson
Publishing year: 2013
Language: English
Pages: 404-408
Publication/Series: Journal of Experimental Zoology A
Volume: 319
Issue: 7
Document type: Journal article
Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell

Abstract english

Female sperm storage can influence male reproductive success and may favour males that produce sperm that remain viable across several ovarian cycles. Here we show that sperm are viable in the female reproductive tract across ovarian cycles in the mallee dragon, Ctenophorus fordi. Based on experimental mating trials, we show that stored sperm were generally less likely to fertilize eggs than recently inseminated sperm. The fertilization success of stored sperm increased with male body size relative to rivals. This may be due to differences in ejaculate volume or sperm number transferred by males of different sizes. However, there was no evidence that copulation time, which is correlated with ejaculate volume, contributed to fertilization success. We suggest that sperm storage across ovarian cycles may be common in small, multi-clutched lizards and that its impact on selection on male phenotypes could contribute to the evolution of lizard mating systems.

Keywords

  • Biological Sciences

Other

Published
Tobias Uller
E-mail: tobias.uller [at] biol.lu.se

Professor

Evolutionary ecology

+46 46 222 30 94

E-C256

Sölvegatan 37, Lund

50

Research group

Experimental Evolution, Ecology & Behaviour

Projects

Doctoral students and postdocs

I am currently about to move to Lund from University of Oxford. For details about DPhil students and postdocs in my previous research group based at the Edward Grey Institute, please click here

Downloads & links

CV (pdf; 241 kB)