The Effectiveness of 3D Printed Models in Studies of Guppy (Poecillia reticulata) Sexual Selection

K Boyles, R Cruz, C Williams, A Wright


Sexual selection was a concept analyzed by Charles Darwin, which provided a theoretical explanation for why males and females develop certain morphological and behavioral characteristics. We tested for male guppy (Poecilia reticulata) responsiveness to 3D printed models, based on similar fish experiments using handmade models. We conducted an experiment which utilized sexual selection tests with guppies by presenting live male specimens with simultaneous stimuli, resulting in two synthetic 3D female guppy models. We concluded that male guppies were reacting positively towards our large 3D printed model of the female guppies. This study revolutionized the art of crafting animal models by implementing the new desktop 3D printers that were able to produce cost-efficient stimuli for testing in under seven minutes and have fish respond to them.


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