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Genetic evidence for prevalence of alloparental care in a socially monogamous biparental cichlid fish, Perissodus microlepis, from Lake Tanganyika supports the "selfish shepherd effect" hypothesis.

Lee HJ, Heim V, Meyer A - Ecol Evol (2016)

Bottom Line: In the majority of broods, the sizes of the parents' own (descendant) offspring were significantly larger than those of the adopted (nondescendant) juveniles, supporting the 'selfish shepherd effect' hypothesis, i.e., that foster parents preferentially accept unrelated "smaller or not larger" young since this would tend to lower the predation risks for their own larger offspring.This result might argue for maladaptive effects of allopatric care for the foster parents that only larger and possibly more experienced pairs can guard against.It needs to be determined why, apparently, the ability to recognize one's own young has not evolved in this species.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Chair in Zoology and Evolutionary BiologyDepartment of BiologyUniversity of Konstanz78457KonstanzGermany; Department of Biological ScienceCollege of Science and EngineeringSangji UniversityWonju220-702Korea.

ABSTRACT
Alloparental care - care for unrelated young - is rare in animals, and its ecological or evolutionary advantages or, alternative maladaptive nature, remain unclear. We investigate alloparental care in the socially monogamous cichlid fish Perissodus microlepis from Lake Tanganyika that exhibits bi-parental care. In a genetic parentage analysis, we discovered a surprisingly high percentage of alloparental care represented by brood mixing, extra-pair paternity and extra-pair maternity in all broods that we investigated. The percentage of nondescendant juveniles of other parents, i.e., brood mixing, ranged from 5% to 57% (mean = 28%). The distribution of genetic parentage also suggests that this socially monogamous species has, in fact, polygamous mating system. The prevalence of genetically mixed broods can be best explained by two, not mutually exclusive hypotheses on farming-out and fostering behaviors. In the majority of broods, the sizes of the parents' own (descendant) offspring were significantly larger than those of the adopted (nondescendant) juveniles, supporting the 'selfish shepherd effect' hypothesis, i.e., that foster parents preferentially accept unrelated "smaller or not larger" young since this would tend to lower the predation risks for their own larger offspring. There was also a tendency for larger parents particularly mothers, more so than smaller parents, to care predominantly for their own offspring. Larger parents might be better at defending against cuckoldry and having foreign young dumped into their broods through farming-out behavior. This result might argue for maladaptive effects of allopatric care for the foster parents that only larger and possibly more experienced pairs can guard against. It needs to be determined why, apparently, the ability to recognize one's own young has not evolved in this species.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus

Proportion of alloparental care in Perissodus microlepis with bi‐parental care and social monogamy, as revealed by maximum likelihood method in COLONY (Jones and Wang 2010). White bar (within‐pair offspring): genetically assigned ‘descendant’ juveniles of both parents; right‐upward diagonal‐line bar (extra‐pair maternity): juveniles of multiple maternity resulting from polygyny; left‐upward diagonal‐line bar (extra‐pair paternity): juveniles of multiple paternity resulting from polyandry; crosses bar (brood mixing): ‘nondescendant’ juveniles to either parent.
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ece32089-fig-0001: Proportion of alloparental care in Perissodus microlepis with bi‐parental care and social monogamy, as revealed by maximum likelihood method in COLONY (Jones and Wang 2010). White bar (within‐pair offspring): genetically assigned ‘descendant’ juveniles of both parents; right‐upward diagonal‐line bar (extra‐pair maternity): juveniles of multiple maternity resulting from polygyny; left‐upward diagonal‐line bar (extra‐pair paternity): juveniles of multiple paternity resulting from polyandry; crosses bar (brood mixing): ‘nondescendant’ juveniles to either parent.

Mentions: The analyses of eight P. microlepis broods revealed unexpectedly high levels of alloparental care via brood mixing and extra‐pair matings (such as extra‐pair [multiple] paternity and extra‐pair [multiple] maternity), ranging from 5% (b4) to 63% (b8) based on exclusion principle and from 5% (b4) to 100% (b3) based on maximum likelihood, respectively (Table 1; Fig. 1). Note that these values represent proportion of juveniles within each of the broods. The discrepancy between the two methods concerning the level of alloparental care was due to underestimates or overestimates of the number of adopted juveniles for b3 from exclusion or maximum likelihood approaches (Table 1). Except that brood, results of genetic parentage were almost identical to each other for the remaining broods (see Table 1).


Genetic evidence for prevalence of alloparental care in a socially monogamous biparental cichlid fish, Perissodus microlepis, from Lake Tanganyika supports the "selfish shepherd effect" hypothesis.

Lee HJ, Heim V, Meyer A - Ecol Evol (2016)

Proportion of alloparental care in Perissodus microlepis with bi‐parental care and social monogamy, as revealed by maximum likelihood method in COLONY (Jones and Wang 2010). White bar (within‐pair offspring): genetically assigned ‘descendant’ juveniles of both parents; right‐upward diagonal‐line bar (extra‐pair maternity): juveniles of multiple maternity resulting from polygyny; left‐upward diagonal‐line bar (extra‐pair paternity): juveniles of multiple paternity resulting from polyandry; crosses bar (brood mixing): ‘nondescendant’ juveniles to either parent.
© Copyright Policy - creativeCommonsBy
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4863010&req=5

ece32089-fig-0001: Proportion of alloparental care in Perissodus microlepis with bi‐parental care and social monogamy, as revealed by maximum likelihood method in COLONY (Jones and Wang 2010). White bar (within‐pair offspring): genetically assigned ‘descendant’ juveniles of both parents; right‐upward diagonal‐line bar (extra‐pair maternity): juveniles of multiple maternity resulting from polygyny; left‐upward diagonal‐line bar (extra‐pair paternity): juveniles of multiple paternity resulting from polyandry; crosses bar (brood mixing): ‘nondescendant’ juveniles to either parent.
Mentions: The analyses of eight P. microlepis broods revealed unexpectedly high levels of alloparental care via brood mixing and extra‐pair matings (such as extra‐pair [multiple] paternity and extra‐pair [multiple] maternity), ranging from 5% (b4) to 63% (b8) based on exclusion principle and from 5% (b4) to 100% (b3) based on maximum likelihood, respectively (Table 1; Fig. 1). Note that these values represent proportion of juveniles within each of the broods. The discrepancy between the two methods concerning the level of alloparental care was due to underestimates or overestimates of the number of adopted juveniles for b3 from exclusion or maximum likelihood approaches (Table 1). Except that brood, results of genetic parentage were almost identical to each other for the remaining broods (see Table 1).

Bottom Line: In the majority of broods, the sizes of the parents' own (descendant) offspring were significantly larger than those of the adopted (nondescendant) juveniles, supporting the 'selfish shepherd effect' hypothesis, i.e., that foster parents preferentially accept unrelated "smaller or not larger" young since this would tend to lower the predation risks for their own larger offspring.This result might argue for maladaptive effects of allopatric care for the foster parents that only larger and possibly more experienced pairs can guard against.It needs to be determined why, apparently, the ability to recognize one's own young has not evolved in this species.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Chair in Zoology and Evolutionary BiologyDepartment of BiologyUniversity of Konstanz78457KonstanzGermany; Department of Biological ScienceCollege of Science and EngineeringSangji UniversityWonju220-702Korea.

ABSTRACT
Alloparental care - care for unrelated young - is rare in animals, and its ecological or evolutionary advantages or, alternative maladaptive nature, remain unclear. We investigate alloparental care in the socially monogamous cichlid fish Perissodus microlepis from Lake Tanganyika that exhibits bi-parental care. In a genetic parentage analysis, we discovered a surprisingly high percentage of alloparental care represented by brood mixing, extra-pair paternity and extra-pair maternity in all broods that we investigated. The percentage of nondescendant juveniles of other parents, i.e., brood mixing, ranged from 5% to 57% (mean = 28%). The distribution of genetic parentage also suggests that this socially monogamous species has, in fact, polygamous mating system. The prevalence of genetically mixed broods can be best explained by two, not mutually exclusive hypotheses on farming-out and fostering behaviors. In the majority of broods, the sizes of the parents' own (descendant) offspring were significantly larger than those of the adopted (nondescendant) juveniles, supporting the 'selfish shepherd effect' hypothesis, i.e., that foster parents preferentially accept unrelated "smaller or not larger" young since this would tend to lower the predation risks for their own larger offspring. There was also a tendency for larger parents particularly mothers, more so than smaller parents, to care predominantly for their own offspring. Larger parents might be better at defending against cuckoldry and having foreign young dumped into their broods through farming-out behavior. This result might argue for maladaptive effects of allopatric care for the foster parents that only larger and possibly more experienced pairs can guard against. It needs to be determined why, apparently, the ability to recognize one's own young has not evolved in this species.

No MeSH data available.


Related in: MedlinePlus