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Dominance, reproductive behaviours and female mate choice in sterilised versus non-sterilised invasive male crayfish.

Green, N., Britton, J.R., Bentley, M., Stebbing, P. and Andreou, D., 2020. Dominance, reproductive behaviours and female mate choice in sterilised versus non-sterilised invasive male crayfish. Aquatic Ecology, 54, 813-822.

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DOI: 10.1007/s10452-020-09779-5


© 2020, The Author(s). Many methods of controlling invasive crayfishes have limited success because they fail to target all life stages of the population, notably by capturing only large adults that can result in increased juvenile recruitment by removing intraspecific predation. An alternative approach uses the sterile male release technique that involves the mass release of sterile males into the environment, which then mate with fertile females, resulting in unfertilised eggs and, ultimately, reduced juvenile recruitment. This does, however, rely on the sterilised males exhibiting behaviours similar to non-sterilised (entire) males and remaining attractive to females during mate choice. Post-copulatory male guarding behaviour and female promiscuity might also be affected by male sterilisation. To test for the presence of normal reproductive behaviours in sterilised male American signal crayfish Pacifastacus leniusculus, a two-stage experiment examined how sterilisation affects female mate choice and promiscuity, male hierarchical status (relative dominance) and post-copulation guarding. Sterilised males showed similar reproductive behaviours to entire males and remained as attractive to females, with no differences in relative dominance. Post-copulation, guarding behaviours were also unaffected. Females did not display promiscuous behaviour and this was unaffected by whether males were entire or sterilised. The results demonstrated that sterilised males were equally as capable as entire males of achieving dominance and winning mates. In combination, these findings suggest that male sterilisation could be an effective control technique to help reduce juvenile recruitment in wild P. leniusculus populations by reducing reproductive success.

Item Type:Article
Uncontrolled Keywords:Biological invasion; Pacifastacus leniusculus; Sterile male release technique; Mate;choice
Group:Faculty of Science & Technology
ID Code:34317
Deposited By: Symplectic RT2
Deposited On:22 Jul 2020 13:33
Last Modified:14 Mar 2022 14:23


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