Frequency-dependent social dominance in a color polymorphic cichlid fish

Dijkstra, P.D., Lindstrom, J. , Metcalfe, N.B. , Hemelrijk, C.K., Brendel, M., Seehausen, O. and Groothuis, T.G.G. (2010) Frequency-dependent social dominance in a color polymorphic cichlid fish. Evolution, 64(10), pp. 2797-2807. (doi: 10.1111/j.1558-5646.2010.01046.x)

[img] Text



A mechanism commonly suggested to explain the persistence of color polymorphisms in animals is negative frequency-dependent selection. It could result from a social dominance advantage to rare morphs. We tested for this in males of red and blue color morphs of the Lake Victoria cichlid, Pundamilia. Earlier work has shown that males preferentially attack the males of their own morph, while red males are more likely to win dyadic contests with blue males. In order to study the potential contribution of both factors to the morph co-existence, we manipulated the proportion of red and blue males in experimental assemblages and studied its effect on social dominance. We then tried to disentangle the effects of the own-morph attack bias and social dominance of red using simulations. In the experiment, we found that red males were indeed socially dominant to the blue ones, but only when rare. However, blue males were not socially dominant when rare. The simulation results suggest that an own-morph attack bias reduces the social dominance of red males when they are more abundant. Thus, there is no evidence of symmetric negative frequency-dependent selection acting on social dominance, suggesting that additional fitness costs to the red morph must explain their co-existence.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:The definitive version is available at
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Lindstrom, Dr Jan and Metcalfe, Professor Neil and Dijkstra, Dr Peter
Authors: Dijkstra, P.D., Lindstrom, J., Metcalfe, N.B., Hemelrijk, C.K., Brendel, M., Seehausen, O., and Groothuis, T.G.G.
College/School:College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Life Sciences
College of Medical Veterinary and Life Sciences > School of Biodiversity, One Health & Veterinary Medicine
Journal Name:Evolution
ISSN (Online):1558-5646
Published Online:22 June 2010
Copyright Holders:Copyright © 2010 Wiley-Blackwell
First Published:First published in Evolution 64(10):2797-2807
Publisher Policy:Reproduced in accordance with the copyright policy of the publisher

University Staff: Request a correction | Enlighten Editors: Update this record