Be a good loser: A theoretical model for subordinate decision-making on bi-directional sex change in haremic fishes

Kota Sawada, Sachi Yamaguchi, Yoh Iwasa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

2 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Among animals living in groups with reproductive skew associated with a dominance hierarchy, subordinates may do best by using various alternative tactics. Sequential hermaphrodites or sex changers adopt a unique solution, that is, being the sex with weaker skew when they are small and subordinate, and changing sex when they become larger. In bi-directionally sex-changing fishes, although most are haremic and basically protogynous, subordinate males can change sex to being females. We study a mathematical model to examine when and why such reversed sex change is more adaptive than dispersal to take over another harem. We attempt to examine previously proposed hypotheses that the risk of dispersal and low density favor reversed sex change, and to specify an optimal decision-making strategy for subordinates. As a result, while the size-dependent conditional strategy in which smaller males tend to change sex is predicted, even large males are predicted to change sex under low density and/or high risk of dispersal, supporting both previous hypotheses. The importance of spatiotemporal variation of social and ecological conditions is also suggested. We discuss a unified framework to understand hermaphroditic and gonochoristic societies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)127-135
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Theoretical Biology
Volume421
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - May 21 2017

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sex reversal
decision support systems
Fish
Theoretical Model
Decision Making
Fishes
Theoretical Models
Decision making
Skew
fish
gender
Animals
Mathematical models
Unique Solution
Tend
Mathematical Model
Dependent
Alternatives
dominance (genetics)
decision making

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Statistics and Probability
  • Modelling and Simulation
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)
  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences(all)
  • Applied Mathematics

Cite this

Be a good loser : A theoretical model for subordinate decision-making on bi-directional sex change in haremic fishes. / Sawada, Kota; Yamaguchi, Sachi; Iwasa, Yoh.

In: Journal of Theoretical Biology, Vol. 421, 21.05.2017, p. 127-135.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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