The relationship between male social status, ejaculate and circulating testosterone concentration and female yolk androgen transfer in red junglefowl (Gallus gallus)

Asmoro Lelono*, Bernd Riedstra, Ton G. G. Groothuis

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
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Abstract

Several studies show that avian females prefer males based on their secondary sexual ornaments and dominance status. We tested in red junglefowl (Goth's gallus) how comb size affected the result of fighting and how the dominance status related to testosterone concentrations in their circulation and ejaculates. We subsequently tested how social status was related to female reproductive investment, including yolk hormone transfer. We found that after a fight 1) winners increased plasma T and decreased ejaculates T whereas losers' T remained unchanged, and 2) plasma T of winners was higher but ejaculates T was lower than those of losers. We argued those are consistent with the different reproductive strategies of dominant and subordinate males. Furthermore, in line with offspring sex-dependent growth patterns females transferred significantly more androstenedione to female than male embryos when mated with winners, while doing the opposite when mated with losers. We concluded therefore that female reproductive investment was affected by both partner quality and embryo sex. The results indicate that male quality influences sex-specific maternal investment, which could be mediated by ejaculate testosterone concentration.

Original languageEnglish
Article number104580
Number of pages8
JournalHormones and Behavior
Volume116
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov-2019

Keywords

  • Ejaculate
  • Testosterone
  • Male quality
  • Androgen yolk hormone transfer
  • MALE ATTRACTIVENESS
  • SEXUAL SELECTION
  • MATE CHOICE
  • REPRODUCTIVE COMPENSATION
  • DIFFERENTIAL ALLOCATION
  • SEMINAL PLASMA
  • SONG SPARROWS
  • INVESTMENT
  • MECHANISMS
  • QUALITY

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