Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology

, Volume 56, Issue 3, pp 253–256 | Cite as

Sequential male mate choice in a fish, the Pacific blue-eye Pseudomugil signifer

  • Bob B. M. Wong
  • Michael D. Jennions
  • J. Scott Keogh
Original Article


Mate choice is not just a female preoccupation. Under some circumstances, males may also be choosy. However, studies of male mate choice have generally been confined to situations where males can make direct comparisons between potential partners. In contrast, sequential male mate choice has largely been overlooked despite its biologically importance, especially if current investment in mate attraction diminishes a male’s future mating opportunities. Using the Pacific blue-eye fish Pseudomugil signifer, we show that males are capable of exercising sequential mate choice. When presented sequentially with large and small females, males spent more effort courting the former. However, males did not appear to modify the time spent courting a given female based on the size of the female encountered previously. We suggest that greater attention to the sequential choice problem in males may help illuminate similarities and differences between the sexes when it comes to mating decisions.


Male mate choice Pacific blue-eye Pseudomugil signifer Sequential mate choice Sexual selection 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • Bob B. M. Wong
    • 1
    • 2
  • Michael D. Jennions
    • 1
  • J. Scott Keogh
    • 1
  1. 1.School of Botany and ZoologyAustralian National UniversityCanberraAustralia
  2. 2.Boston University Marine ProgramUSA

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