Female and male contribution to egg size in salmonids
- Cite this article as:
- Pakkasmaa, S., Peuhkuri, N., Laurila, A. et al. Evolutionary Ecology (2001) 15: 143. doi:10.1023/A:1013873810905
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Egg size contributes to other life history traits of an individual. It is traditionally considered as a maternally determined characteristic to which the male does not have any direct contribution. However, a recent finding in insects suggests that males can affect egg size also directly. In fish, the male effect could take place only during egg swelling, as the final egg size is reached after that. We studied egg size in four freshwater salmonid species (the land-locked Atlantic salmon, the brown trout, the Arctic charr and the lake trout) right after fertilisation (initial egg size) and after the swelling phase (final egg size). The results showed that the final egg size is affected not only by the initial egg size but also by both the female and the male through the process of egg swelling. This study suggests that paternal contribution may form a previously largely ignored source of variation in early life history traits in salmonid fish.