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Mating Propensity and Courtship Behavior in Serially Bottlenecked Lines of the Housefly

Lisa M. Meffert and Edwin H. Bryant
Evolution
Vol. 45, No. 2 (Mar., 1991), pp. 293-306
DOI: 10.2307/2409664
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2409664
Page Count: 14
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Mating Propensity and Courtship Behavior in Serially Bottlenecked Lines of the Housefly
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Abstract

The efficacy of bottlenecks to stimulate divergence in courtship behavior and consequent premating isolation was tested by serial founder-flush episodes of three sizes (one, four, or 16 pairs) on a population of houseflies established in the laboratory from a single field population. After the fifth founder-flush episode, intraline and interline crosses were performed to detect divergence in mating propensities and patterns of assortative mating. Videotapings of intraline courtships for the bottleneck lines and the control were evaluated for changes in courtship repertoire. All bottleneck lines showed significant divergence from the control in male and/or female mating propensity and in courtship behavior. Divergence from the control was bidirectional for both male and female mating propensities as well as for courtship element utilization. Out of 15 tests for assortative mating between bottleneck lines and between bottleneck lines and the control, only two cases of positive assortative mating and one case of negative assortative mating were detected. Because some bottleneck lines showed increased courtship element utilization and because decreased courtship utilization in some bottleneck lines was related to higher male mating success, the mechanisms behind the Kaneshiro model (which is based upon ancestral females discriminating against bottleneck males that had "lost" courtship elements) were not supported in general. A partitioning effect of the bottlenecks upon the intrinsic variation in the ancestral population for courtship pattern appeared to explain a large component of the directions of divergence from the control. Still, the pattern of divergence of some bottleneck lines apparently was not constrained by the intercorrelation structure of courtship behaviors detected in the control. Because previous studies showed that the bottleneck lines had rebounded from inbreeding depression to fitness levels of the control, this study documents nondebilitating differentiation in the courtship repertoire that can account for divergent mating propensities and premating isolation.

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