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Title: Time and size at metamorphosis related to adult fitness in Ambystoma talpoideum

The relationships among timing of metamorphosis, size at metamorphosis, and traits related to adult fitness were studied for 8 yr in the salamander Ambystoma talpoideum at a temporary pond. Among years, the modal time of metamorphosis and mean body size at metamorphosis were positively correlated with the date the pond dried. In years that the pond dried late, one group of larvae metamorphosed well before the pond dried, whereas the other group metamorphosed just before pond drying. Mean body size of late-metamorphosing individuals was not greater than that of individuals metamorphosing early. Early-metamorphosing males and females were larger at first and second reproduction than were late-metamorphosing individuals. Independent of timing of metamorphosis, larger juveniles at metamorphosis were also larger adults at first reproduction. Age at first reproduction for males was not associated with timing of or size at metamorphosis but large early-metamorphosing females reproduced at a younger age than did small early-metamorphosing females. Neither time of metamorphosis nor size at metamorphosis was associated with survival to first reproduction. These results demonstrate a direct relationship between phenotypic variation generated in the larval stage and adult traits closely associated with an individual's fitness.
Authors:
; ;
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
6860156
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Ecology; (United States); Journal Volume: 69:1
Research Org:
Memphis State Univ., TN (USA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
54 ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES; SALAMANDERS; ECOLOGY; METAMORPHOSIS; PHENOTYPE; POPULATION DYNAMICS; REPRODUCTION; SIZE; SURVIVAL TIME; AMPHIBIANS; ANIMALS; AQUATIC ORGANISMS; VERTEBRATES 520100* -- Environment, Aquatic-- Basic Studies-- (-1989)