Competition or co-operation?

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David De Angelis
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Competition or co-operation?

Postby David De Angelis » Fri Oct 26, 2007 9:52 am

I went on a frog walk the other night lead by an ecologist from local council and he had an interesting hypothesis as to why males of the same species call together in a chorus.

I was always under the impression that they were competing with each other for mates, the genetically "fittest" males (ie: loudest callers) generally being the most successful.

His suggestion was that they call co-operatively to attract greater numbers of females to the area and maximise each individual's opportunity to mate by "sharing" or spreading partners between them.

Any ideas?

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Evan
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Postby Evan » Fri Oct 26, 2007 10:02 am

There was a paper which discussed this, where they tested the female's choice of site (and then the male within the site). Can't remember the results, but I remember it was interesting and the tests were quite well done. I'll look it up later, have to finish assignments right now. I think they were American species.

I agree that is probably the cause. There are some frogs which go to a greater extent. Assa darlingtoni call in perfect sync within small groups. Conceivably, this is to attract females to that group. It is once the female has chosen the group that it gets difficult to understand how she chooses the specific male.

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Gulper
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Postby Gulper » Fri Oct 26, 2007 1:15 pm

Hmmm, sounds like it might make sense- does this mean I should hang out with a bunch of male athletes/millionaires/moviestars/models/
frog geeks in the hope that they will attract more women than they can deal with and my luck might change by association? It has always puzzled me how female cicadas manage to locate a single calling male, or in a chorus of pobblebonks (like one of those BIG choruses where the calls blend into white noise) the female can locate a male- perhaps she can't, she just stumbles in amongst them and the males fight over her.

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Nathan Litjens
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Humans have leks too...

Postby Nathan Litjens » Fri Oct 26, 2007 5:15 pm

Sounds like the pubs in Airlie Beach...

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Gulper
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I'm not sure if I lek that idea

Postby Gulper » Fri Oct 26, 2007 5:39 pm

That's hilarious!- although when I went to Airlie some years back a woman turned the tables and tried to pick me up. I probably looked like an easy target. Unfortunately I had eaten my first and last ever slice of fish pizza and was not in a reciprocal mood. She would have got more attention from me if she looked like a bucket- I was definitely queazy.

Sometimes I wonder if I'm stuck in a rut.

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Ann
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Postby Ann » Fri Oct 26, 2007 7:10 pm

Anyone who eats fish pizza is NOT stuck in a rut!

Yukkk!!! What made you do that! :shock: :lol:
Ann

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Gulper
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Not recommended

Postby Gulper » Fri Oct 26, 2007 7:39 pm

You know the old sayings: "I'll try anything once, twice if I like it!" Well- I only tried fish pizza once. :shock: There is another great quote by Susan Jeffers "Feel the fear and do it anyway." I feel the fear at the thought of another fish pizza- and I am not going to do it anyway, ever again. No offence to Ms Jeffers but there are limits.

"That which does not kill you makes you stronger."

Why did I do it in the first place? I think it was a combination of an interesting location and the Y chromosome kicking in. I think we lost a lot of information to do with self-preservation when we lost that quarter of a chromosome.

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GrantW
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Postby GrantW » Fri Oct 26, 2007 11:13 pm

Haha ok, well I think I'll just stick to standard pizzas then.

On a more serious note, that calling behaviour would make sense, may explain why males frogs generally group in the one spot and call at the same time.

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Evan
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Postby Evan » Fri Oct 26, 2007 11:30 pm

I can't find that paper, but I know the general location of the journal in the library. Doubt that helps anyone, but it could prove important :D

Whilst looking for it, I found a very interesting article which answers something Alex brought up. When the female gets mounted by a male she doesn't like, she doesn't release all her eggs, just a small portion. That way she tricks the male into thinking he's the greatest, and slips away to find another man.

http://www.journals.royalsoc.ac.uk/cont ... b4yt5d8u2/

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