Second, we conducted a cross-fostering experiment to separate prenatal and postnatal effects by giving each pair of beetles an experimental brood of newly hatched larvae derived from one of our two treatment groups. We modeled effects on brood weight at hatching using a linear model fitting manipulation and time from mating to cross-fostering as explanatory variables to control for a potential difference due to the timing of hatching between the male sexual treatments. Our results indicate that female manipulation of male behavior was targeted toward sexual conflict over food consumption rather than conflict over parental care.
Females manipulate behavior of caring males via prenatal maternal effects
Should young ever be better off with one parent than with two? A cross-fostering experiment reveals that prenatal environment affects begging behaviour in a cooperative breeder. Thus, our result provides evidence of manipulation anticipatory maternal effect, whereby females reduce their prenatal investment in offspring when anticipating help from a male partner male sexualmale sexual We found that offspring were smaller at hatching when females laid manipulation in presence of a male, suggesting that females invest less in eggs when expecting male assistance.
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Sexual conflict over consumption may be particularly important in our study species, given that it breeds on carcasses of small vertebrates that serve as food for both parents and developing larvae 2021 ; however, such conflict may be important in other systems as well, such as birds, where the two parents find food for themselves and their offspring within a shared territory. Furthermore, we added the amount of care provided by the partner at the same stage 27 and brood weight at hatching as male sexual manipulation effects, to investigate whether any effect of the male sexual manipulation could be mediated by its effect on partner behavior or on brood weight at hatching. Factors affecting male and female care. Previous empirical and theoretical work has focused mainly on three behavioral mechanisms that may mediate the resolution of this conflict 12. A test of the manipulating androgens hypothesis in house wrens.