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Evolution. 2010 Oct;64(10):3069-83. doi: 10.1111/j.1558-5646.2010.01053.x. Epub 2010 Aug 19.

Inbreeding and advertisement calling in the cricket Teleogryllus commodus: laboratory and field experiments.

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Evolution, Ecology & Genetics, Research School of Biology, The Australian National University, Canberra, ACT, Australia.


If sexually selected traits reveal a male's heterozygosity or condition to females, then such traits should exhibit declines with inbreeding. We tested this by examining the effect of inbreeding on advertisement calling in male crickets Teleogryllus commodus. We investigated the effect of one generation of full-sibling mating on calling effort and fine-scale call structure. Inbreeding reduced calling effort but had no effect on call structure. We then compared the attractiveness of inbred and outbred calls in the field by monitoring how many wild females were attracted to each call type. From the field data, we conducted a selection analysis to identify the major axes of linear and nonlinear multivariate sexual selection on call structure. A comparison of multivariate attractiveness of inbred and outbred calls along each major axis of selection revealed no difference in attractiveness. Our results suggest that inbred male calls have a fine-scale structure that is no less attractive to females than that of outbred calls. However, because inbred males call less often, and female T. commodus prefer males with a higher calling effort, inbred males will suffer reductions in mating success. Females who base mate choice on call rate are therefore using a signal correlated with male heterozygosity and/or condition.

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