Ejaculate testosterone levels affect maternal investment in red junglefowl (Gallus gallus gallus)

Asmoro Lelono*, Bernd Riedstra, Ton Groothuis

*Bijbehorende auteur voor dit werk

OnderzoeksoutputAcademicpeer review

4 Citaten (Scopus)
51 Downloads (Pure)


Substantial concentrations of testosterone are not only present in a male's circulation, but also in its ejaculate. Surprisingly, the regulation of ejaculate T and its effects on females and their offspring, potentially a cryptic paternal trait, are not known. We found lower circulating and higher ejaculate T concentrations in subordinate red junglefowl (Gallus gallus gallus) males compared to dominant males, suggestive of an adaptive trade-off in T allocation to circulation and their ejaculate. Subsequently, we artificially inseminated females with either testosterone enriched (TE) or control ejaculates (CE) in a cross-over design. TE females produced heavier eggs than CE females. Offspring growth and tonic immobility were affected in a sex-specific way by TE. TE sons were heavier with shorter TI duration than CE sons, and TE daughters were lighter than CE daughters but daughters did not differ in TI score. However, the chicks competitiveness was not influenced by the TE nor CE. This indicates a previously unknown function of ejaculate testosterone as well as a new form of interaction between a cryptic paternal trait and a maternal effect that may be widespread in the animal kingdom.

Originele taal-2English
Aantal pagina's10
TijdschriftScientific Reports
StatusPublished - 20-aug-2019

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