Sex change as an alternative life-history style

  • Douglas Y. Shapiro
Part of the Perspectives in vertebrate science book series (PIVS, volume 6)

Synopsis

The proximate mechanism controlling the initiation of sex change tunes the timing of sex change to particular behavioral and demographic alterations within the social system. Consequently, changes from one sex to another are condition-dependent. A number of aspects of sex-changing species might be considered alternatives depending on our definition of alternative tactics and the level of analysis desired. Theoretical approaches to sex change as an alternative life-history tactic should address the issue of intrapopulational variation in the timing of sex change. A model by Caswell (1983) can be applied to this question. The result is a new explanation for early sex change. Alternative male spawning patterns in diandric species require the existence of alternative female spawning behaviors. When the spawning system is viewed from the female perspective, a new explanation emerges for the increase in reproductive success with increasing reef size observed in initial phase males of one diandric fish.

Key words

Fishes Condition-dependent Plasticity Behavior Demography Spawning Reproductive success Reef size 

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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers, Dordrecht 1989

Authors and Affiliations

  • Douglas Y. Shapiro
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Marine SciencesUniversity of Puerto RicoMayaguez, Puerto RicoUSA

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