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Male-skewed sex ratio in Myrica esculenta: a dioecious tree species

  • Vinod Prasad KhanduriEmail author
  • Arun Sukumaran
  • Chandra Mohan Sharma
Original Article
  • 31 Downloads

Abstract

Key message

The population of M. esculenta tends to deviate from the equilibrium of expected 1:1 primary sex ratio predicted by Fisherian theory.

Abstract

Populations of dioecious plants may often exhibit biased sex ratios, which generally favour males. A study on reproductive potential, i.e., pollen production and female flower production, and reproductive success in Myricaesculenta was assessed in three diameter (diameter at breast height: dbh at 1.37 m) classes, i.e., small (10–20 cm), medium (20–30 cm), and large (30–40 cm). Population structure and sex ratio was determined in transects in four major associations of Myricaesculenta, i.e., (i) with mixed Oak-Rhododendron forest (ii) with Chir Pine–Oak forest, (iii) with pure Oak forest, and (iv) with pure Deodar forest. The sex ratio of trees was male-biased. Male frequency was higher in lower diameter classes and maximum on resource-poor site. More female individuals were recorded in higher-diameter classes and resource rich location, indicating that the total reproductive cost in M. esculenta is greater in female trees than that of the male trees. The population of M.esculenta tends to deviate from the equilibrium of expected 1:1 primary sex ratio predicted by Fisherian theory. The male trees demonstrated greater survival, especially in resource-poor conditions, which was reflected strongly biased sex ratios within the lower size classes. The study would be helpful for formulating appropriate silvicultural and genetic management strategies for this species.

Keywords

Pollination Reproductive success Sex ratio Myrica Himalaya 

Notes

Author contributions

VPK and AS conceived the study, set up the experiment, conducted field work, and drafted the initial manuscript; CMS helped in designing the field experiment and improved the drafts. VPK revised the manuscript. All authors read and approved the manuscript.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Forestry, College of ForestryVCSG Uttarakhand University of Horticulture and ForestryTehri GarhwalIndia

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