Staff Publications

Staff Publications

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    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

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Record number 362435
Title Offering offspring as food to cannibals: oviposition strategies of Amazonian poison frogs (Dendrobates ventrimaculatus)
Author(s) Poelman, E.H.; Dicke, M.
Source Evolutionary Ecology 21 (2007)2. - ISSN 0269-7653 - p. 215 - 227.
Department(s) Laboratory of Entomology
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2007
Keyword(s) reproductive resource supplementation - phytophagous insects - tadpole deposition - meligethes-aeneus - pollen beetle - clutch size - brood care - selection - behavior - complex
Abstract Species utilizing distinct resources for offspring production often show plasticity in reproductive strategies as a function of resource quality. For species using ephemeral pools, strategies are mainly shaped by a time constraint related to pool stability, resource availability and the colonizing community. We studied reproductive strategies in Amazonian poison frogs (Dendrobates ventrimaculatus) that are characterized by oviposition in distinct, small and resource-limited water bodies in leaf axils of plants and the transport of newly hatched tadpoles on the back of males to similar water bodies. Cannibalism of eggs by tadpoles was found to be the main cause of egg mortality. Typically, at the end of the rainy season new clutches of eggs were deposited in water bodies already containing a tadpole. Manipulation of the available number of water bodies showed that this observation did not result from resource limitation. We conclude that D. ventrimaculatus has a plastic reproductive strategy that includes provisioning its tadpoles with fertilized eggs as a function of desiccation risk of water bodies housing its offspring. Provisioning behavior is expected to increase developmental rate and, therefore, chances of metamorphosis for tadpoles that hatched towards the end of the rainy season. The plastic food provisioning strategy may be an important evolutionary link to bi-parental and female care with development of obligate unfertilized egg provisioning in the genus Dendrobates.
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