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Maternal effects on offspring size and number in mosquitofish, Gambusia holbrooki

O'Dea, Rose; Vega, Regina; Head, Megan; Jennions, Michael

Description

Given a trade-off between offspring size and number, all mothers are predicted to produce the same optimal-sized offspring in a given environment. In many species, however, larger and/or older mothers produce bigger offspring. There are several hypotheses to explain this but they lack strong empirical support. In organisms with indeterminate growth, there is the additional problem that maternal size and age are positively correlated, so what are their relative roles in determining offspring...[Show more]

dc.contributor.authorO'Dea, Rose
dc.contributor.authorVega, Regina
dc.contributor.authorHead, Megan
dc.contributor.authorJennions, Michael
dc.date.accessioned2015-12-13T22:19:09Z
dc.identifier.issn2045-7758
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/1885/71655
dc.description.abstractGiven a trade-off between offspring size and number, all mothers are predicted to produce the same optimal-sized offspring in a given environment. In many species, however, larger and/or older mothers produce bigger offspring. There are several hypotheses to explain this but they lack strong empirical support. In organisms with indeterminate growth, there is the additional problem that maternal size and age are positively correlated, so what are their relative roles in determining offspring size? To investigate this, we measured the natural relationship between maternal and offspring size in a wild population of Gambusia holbrooki (eastern mosquitofish), and experimentally disentangled the effects of maternal age and size on offspring size in the laboratory. In combination, our data indicate that the relationship between maternal and offspring size is nonlinear. Small mothers seem to produce larger than average offspring due to integer effects associated with very small broods. For extremely large mothers, which were only sampled in our wild data, these larger than average offspring may result from greater maternal resources or age effects. However, maternal age had no effect on offspring size or number in the laboratory experiment. Our results highlight the importance of sampling the full size-range of mothers when investigating maternal effects on offspring size. They also point to the difficulty of experimentally manipulating maternal size, because any change in size is invariably associated with a change in at least one factor affecting growth (be it temperature, food availability, or density) that might also have an indirect effect on offspring size.
dc.publisherJohn Wiley & Sons Inc
dc.rightsAuthor/s retain copyright
dc.sourceEcology and Evolution
dc.titleMaternal effects on offspring size and number in mosquitofish, Gambusia holbrooki
dc.typeJournal article
local.description.notesImported from ARIES
local.identifier.citationvolume5
dc.date.issued2015
local.identifier.absfor060201 - Behavioural Ecology
local.identifier.absfor060300 - EVOLUTIONARY BIOLOGY
local.identifier.absfor060800 - ZOOLOGY
local.identifier.ariespublicationa383154xPUB2817
local.type.statusPublished Version
local.contributor.affiliationO'Dea, Rose, College of Medicine, Biology and Environment, ANU
local.contributor.affiliationVega, Regina, College of Medicine, Biology and Environment, ANU
local.contributor.affiliationHead, Megan, College of Medicine, Biology and Environment, ANU
local.contributor.affiliationJennions, Michael, College of Medicine, Biology and Environment, ANU
local.bibliographicCitation.issue14
local.bibliographicCitation.startpage2945
local.bibliographicCitation.lastpage2955
local.identifier.doi10.1002/ece3.1577
local.identifier.absseo970106 - Expanding Knowledge in the Biological Sciences
dc.date.updated2015-12-11T07:45:24Z
local.identifier.scopusID2-s2.0-84936877232
dcterms.accessRightsOpen Access
CollectionsANU Research Publications

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