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Anim Behav. 2000 Jan;59(1):177-182.

Fluctuating asymmetry, size and mating success in males of Ischnura elegans (Vander Linden) (Odonata: Coenagrionidae).

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  • 1Dipartimento di Biologia, Universit√† 'Tor Vergata'


Fluctuating asymmetry (FA) is thought to be an indicator of developmental stability and negatively related to male mating success in many animal taxa. We investigated the relationships between mating success of males, body size and FA for both wing length and number of setae on the legs in the damselfly Ischnura elegans. Males were classified as mated or unmated at the time of sampling. Fluctuating asymmetry, expressed as right-left differences, showed normal distributions without evidence of directional asymmetry or antisymmetry. Univariate analyses showed a significant negative correlation between size and mating success, and significant negative correlations between FA and mating success for both characters. On the other hand, with a multivariate analysis, new to studies on FA, the effect of body size was still significant but FA did not reach significance for either character. We conclude that the multivariate analysis should be used to assess the role of the different factors affecting mating success. Copyright 2000 The Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour.

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