Evolution of Reproductive Traits Under Pre-and Post-Mating Sexual Selection Public Deposited

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  • March 19, 2019
  • Dhole, Sumit
    • Affiliation: College of Arts and Sciences, Department of Biology
  • Sexual selection has shaped the evolution of a variety of reproductive traits in males and females of numerous species. Because females of most animal species mate with multiple males, sexual selection can extend beyond mate choice and inter-sexual competition for mates to post-mating events such as sperm competition and cryptic female mate choice. In this thesis I addresses the evolution of reproductive traits under selection before and after mating. In Chapter 2, I address the evolution of female choosiness and male mating displays that function as indicators of male genetic quality. I address the influence on the evolution of these reproductive traits of female ability to evaluate male genetic quality without recourse to male displays. Counter to intuition, I find that direct detection of male quality by females, instead of impeding, can facilitate the evolution of male displays at intermediate levels of detectability. I present a new continuum framework for different mechanisms of indicator displays that heretofore have been modeled as discrete types. I find that the continuum framework reveals interesting patterns in how direct detectability of male quality influences the evolution of different types of indicators. In Chapter 3 I investigate age-dependent plasticity in male mating investment using Drosophila pseudoobscura. I find that male mating investment generally increases with male age, and intermediate-aged males are most discriminatory with respect to female age, making smaller investments when mating with older females. Male mating investment was correlated with fitness payoffs from matings, but matings with young females were more profitable for males than matings with old females. In Chapter 4 addresses the evolution of male seminal fluid composition. I investigate how males evolve to allocate resources towards different seminal fluid proteins that increase male sperm-competitive fitness in different ways. I find that the relative efficiencies of proteins play a large role in determining the evolutionarily stable ejaculate composition. Also, plasticity in ejaculate composition can contribute to the maintenance of genetic variation in ejaculate composition across populations. Together these chapters form important stepping stones for designing models that address the interactions and coevolution of reproductive traits that function before and after mating.
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  • In Copyright
  • Jones, Corbin
  • Kingsolver, Joel
  • Servedio, Maria
  • Noor, Mohamed
  • Pfennig, Karin
  • Doctor of Philosophy
Degree granting institution
  • University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Graduate School
Graduation year
  • 2014
Place of publication
  • Chapel Hill, NC
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