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Proc Biol Sci. 2001 Jan 7;268(1462):87-93.

Males call more from wetter nests: effects of substrate water potential on reproductive behaviours of terrestrial toadlets.

Author information

1
Department of Environmental Biology, University of Adelaide, South Australia, Australia. nicola.mitchell@adelaide.edu.au

Abstract

Laboratory studies of terrestrial-breeding frogs have demonstrated that wetter substrates produce fitter offspring but the relevance of substrate wetness to adult reproductive strategies is unknown. I hypothesized that male toadlets (Pseudophryne bibronii) would select wetter areas for nesting and would advertise wet nests strongly, and tested these predictions by manipulating water potentials at a breeding site. Males preferred to nest in the wettest areas, and called at greater rates on almost twice as many nights as males occupying drier nests. Overall, males that mated called on significantly more nights than unmated males. Hence, because males occupying wet nests called more, they also mated more and in 19 out of 20 cases, oviposition occurred in wet nests that were suitable for embryonic development. Males occupying drier nests may have risked dehydration by calling, and so were less able to signal to females. Hydration states therefore have the potential to influence the reproductive success of terrestrial male frogs.

PMID:
12123303
PMCID:
PMC1087605
DOI:
10.1098/rspb.2000.1334
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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