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The Relationship Between Marking Patterns and Motivational State in the Pre-Spawning Behaviour of the Cichlid Fish Chromidotilapia Guentheri (Sauvage)

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image of Netherlands Journal of Zoology
For more content, see Archives Néerlandaises de Zoologie (Vol 1-17) and Animal Biology (Vol 53 and onwards).

This paper concerns an analysis of the organization structure of the pre-spawning behaviour of Chromidotilapia guentheri. This species is exceptional for the cichlid family in that pair formation is combined with oral incubation by the male. The form of the pre-spawning behaviour, and the structure of the organization underlying it, is compared with corresponding findings in other specied studies and found to be based on a common plan. It serves to shift the initially hostile interaction with a potential partner towards mutual cooperation in spawning and broodcare. The study especially aims at investigating the possibility to use the variable marking patterns of the fish as indicators of the instantaneous motivational state.

Affiliations: 1: Zoological Laboratory, University of Groningen, Postbus 14, 9750 AA Haren The Netherlands


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