Male Poecilia reticulata Sexual Preference Towards Females with Non-Intact Tailfins

Kristen Ball, Jonathan Bartle, Grace Adams, Ashlin Ambrose, Adriana Townsend


In our study, we determined if male guppies have a preference to female guppies’ visual appearance when selecting a mate. We used two guppies; both purple decoys, one a control guppy and the other a guppy with a deformed tailfin. One of each decoy guppies were placed on different sides of a fish tank that contained one real guppy. The decoys were attached to a ruler stick and suspended in the water with two metal rods connecting to the ruler stick. Using a computer software, we randomly placed the control on either the left or right side of the tank and then measured the guppies’ position and behaviors towards each decoy guppy. After running 10 trials we gathered data based on the results. We found that our hypothesis was inconclusive as the male guppies did not seem to prefer the control decoy over the deformed decoy.

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