Do Male Guppies Prefer More Realistic 3D Printed Models?

Casey Johnson, Edie Kyle, Katie Maupin, Cosmo Binegar, Scott Goeppner


3D printed guppies are an essential part of gathering data for experiments testing the mating preferences of male guppies. Because of the vital role the 3D printed guppies play, it is important that they are the most detailed they can be, as to not skew results. Boyles et al concluded that 3D printed models are more or less interchangeable with real guppies for the experiments. We tested to see if 3D models could be improved for future experiments. In order to do this, we made a 3D model with more pectoral fins present and tested the male guppy’s preference towards it over the control models with less detailed fin structure. We hypothesized that male guppies would be more attracted to 3D models who had pectoral fins than 3D models who did not because they better resemble guppies the males would encounter in their natural habitats. We found no significant preference for the model with fins over the control. This could be due to the conditions the experiments take place in, or lack of interest in mating from the male guppies.

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