Life-History Strategy in Sticklebacks
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Evolution has been likened to an existential game which the players cannot, in the long term, win. Failure is indeed ultimately inevitable, but success is measured by the length of time for which a player can avoid losing (Slobodkin and Rapoport, 1974). individuals die, populations disappear, species go extinct, but if some individuals in a population are temporarily successful in their evolutionary game, they leave offspring that reach sexual maturity and so the population is maintained for at least another generation. Since the individuals that are successful may not be genetically fully representative of the whole population, the genetic composition of the population may change from one generation to the next. Evolution has taken place, but the continuity of the gene pool in time has not been broken.
KeywordsBreeding Season Parental Care Sexual Maturity Reproductive Effort Adult Survivorship
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