Mate detection success of maleClethrionomys rufocanus in relation to the spatial distribution of sexually receptive females
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Mate detection success of male grey-sided voles,Clethrionomys rufocanus, in relation to the spatial distribution of sexually receptive females was studied in an experimental island population. The spatiotemporal distribution of receptive females was controlled by containing females in small, mobile wire-mesh cages, whereas the response by free-ranging males was monitored by means of radiotelemetry. Males were on average more successful in finding oestrous females when females were spatially clumped than when females were spatially overdispersed. In addition, the variance (CV) in male mate detecting success was highest when females had an overdispersed spatial distribution. These results are consistent with predictions from a theoretical model (Ims, 1988b) analysing the effect of mate distribution on male mating success, and with empirical results on prey detection success of predators searching for prey.
KeywordsMate searching spatial distribution of mates mate detection success area restricted search
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