Love at First Fin: The Effect of Female Color and Movement on Male Guppy Mating Preference

Chloe Carrier, Faith Williams, Kyle Cancelmi, Greg Winkler, Abby McClellan


Previous experiments have found that, in sexual selection, guppies favor more brightly colored mates. Therefore, because of the ability to produce a greater amount of offspring, natural selection has favored brightly pigmented guppies over time. In this experiment, the effect of female color and movement on male guppy mating preference was tested using female guppy models created using a three-dimensional printer. Based on observations of the guppies and data collected, it was found that while male guppies do in fact favor brightly colored female mates (especially the color green), the male guppies were frightened and deterred by female movement. These findings may be of use in the commercial pet industry, as male guppies that are bred with tranquil, brightly colored females are likely to produce a higher yield of offspring that could then be sold for profit. 

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