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The Inheritance of Certain Color Patterns in Wild Populations of Lebistes reticulatus in Trinidad

Caryl P. Haskins and Edna F. Haskins
Evolution
Vol. 5, No. 3 (Sep., 1951), pp. 216-225
DOI: 10.2307/2405461
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2405461
Page Count: 10
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The Inheritance of Certain Color Patterns in Wild Populations of Lebistes reticulatus in Trinidad
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Abstract

A preliminary analysis is presented of the mode of inheritance of patterns of male secondary sex coloration in several wild populations of Lebistes reticulatus in Trinidad. A high proportion of such factors were found to behave as though Y-linked in inheritance, but a substantial number behaved as though located in the X-chromosome or the autosomes. In some cases complex and brilliant patterns were found to behave as though under the control of a single gene, or of a series of very tightly linked genes. In others, patterns were obviously composite and under the control of several genes. It seems likely that this situation of polymorphism will be found to be highly sensitive to selectional factors. There is some indication that two of the most important of these may involve the advantage in competitive mating secured through brilliant male patterning as a positive element and the greater vulnerability to predation of conspicuously colored males as a negative one. Both of these factors may be expected to be proportional to the total conspicuousness of the coloration but largely independent of specific patterns. Thus it might be supposed that a wide distribution of individual patterns would characterize a single population. This appears to be true of Lebistes in Trinidad. It might be further supposed that X-linked or autosomal patterns would tend to be emphasized in populations existing in environments characterized by heavy predation, because of the reservoir for such factors available in the uncolored females. By the same token, it might be expected that Y-linked factors would predominate in populations of Lebistes which had long been protected from predators. Further analysis of such situations is planned.

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