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Promiscuity resolves constraints on social mate choice imposed by population viscosity


While, GM and Uller, T and Bordogna, G and Wapstra, E, Promiscuity resolves constraints on social mate choice imposed by population viscosity, Molecular Ecology, 23, (3) pp. 721-732. ISSN 0962-1083 (2014) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2013 John Wiley & Sons Ltd

DOI: doi:10.1111/mec.12618


Population viscosity can have major consequences for adaptive evolution, in particular for phenotypes involved in social interactions. For example, population viscosity increases the probability of mating with close kin, resulting in selection for mechanisms that circumvent the potential negative consequences of inbreeding. Female promiscuity is often suggested to be one such mechanism. However, whether avoidance of genetically similar partners is a major selective force shaping patterns of promiscuity remains poorly supported by empirical data. Here, we show (i) that fine-scale genetic structure constrains social mate choice in a pair-bonding lizard, resulting in individuals pairing with genetically similar individuals, (ii) that these constraints are circumvented by multiple mating with less related individuals and (iii) that this results in increased heterozygosity of offspring. Despite this, we did not detect any significant effects of heterozygosity on offspring or adult fitness or a strong relationship between pair relatedness and female multiple mating. We discuss these results within the context of incorporating the genetic context dependence of mating strategies into a holistic understanding of mating system evolution.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:sexual selection, mate choice, social systems, lizard, extra-pair paternity, heterozygosity, inbreeding avoidance, mating systems, population viscosity, relatedness
Research Division:Biological Sciences
Research Group:Ecology
Research Field:Behavioural ecology
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding knowledge in the biological sciences
UTAS Author:While, GM (Associate Professor Geoff While)
UTAS Author:Bordogna, G (Ms Genevieve Bordogna)
UTAS Author:Wapstra, E (Professor Erik Wapstra)
ID Code:89881
Year Published:2014
Web of Science® Times Cited:17
Deposited By:Zoology
Deposited On:2014-03-18
Last Modified:2017-11-01

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