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Physiol Biochem Zool. 2004 Jan-Feb;77(1):50-64.

Intersexual differences in energy expenditure of Anolis carolinensis lizards during breeding and postbreeding seasons.

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Department of Biology, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA 24061-0406, USA.


Although the amount of energy that males and females invest in reproduction is an integral component of theories explaining the evolution of particular mating strategies, few studies have actually determined the amount of energy that each sex allocates to reproduction. We compared how energy is expended by male and female Anolis carolinensis lizards during both the breeding and postbreeding seasons. We used laboratory respirometry to determine resting metabolic rates (RMRs) of inactive, freshly captured lizards and the doubly labeled water technique to determine field metabolic rates (FMRs) of free-ranging lizards. Both RMRs and FMRs were influenced by body mass but not by sex. Season did not influence FMRs; however, RMRs of both sexes increased approximately 40% from the breeding to the postbreeding season. The seasonal increase in RMRs was attributed to a postreproductive increase in feeding rate and specific dynamic action. We used RMRs, FMRs, and thermal profiles of lizards to calculate energy budgets for breeding and postbreeding seasons. Energy budgets partitioned daily field energy (DFE; calculated from FMRs) into daily activity energy (DAE) and daily resting energy (DRE; calculated from RMRs). Energy expended for reproduction was estimated as DAE during the breeding season plus egg production (for females). Despite males having 40% greater body mass, females expended 46% more energy for reproduction than did males (906 and 619 J/d, respectively). Total metabolizable energy (TME=DFE+egg production for females) expended during the breeding season was similar for males and females (1,280 and 1,365 J/d, respectively). Although TME of females decreased 44% from the breeding to the postbreeding season (1,365 vs. 766 J/d), TME of males was similar during both seasons (1,280 vs. 1,245 J/d). There were both seasonal and sexual differences in DRE and DAE. Compared with most lizards from semiarid/desert habitats, A. carolinensis in a temperate habitat expends more total energy during the breeding season, allocates more energy to eggs, and appears to have more total energy available for reproduction.

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