lThe Effect of Spinal Deformities on the Mate Selection of Poecilia Reticulatae

Austin Watkins, Alye Stewart, Lilian Zack, Tyanna Skinner, Katerina Ramos


The sexual selection of guppies, Poecilia reticulata, impacts the natural selection of the species because it creates differential fitness. Curveback guppies are a very common subtype of the species and it is important to determine how this spinal deformity affects sexual selection. Models representing both normal and deformed female guppies were made and presented to male guppies. Time spent near each model along with reproductive behaviors was recorded. We found that the male guppies spent more time and exhibit more reproductive behaviors toward the normal female models compared to the deformed female models. This indicates that male guppies have a preference toward mating with female guppies that are structural normal compared to those with obvious abnormalities.

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