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Body size and spermatophore production in the smooth newt (Triturus. vulgaris)

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Short term mating capacity of male smooth newts was measured by recording the number of spermatophores presented to a female model. The number of spermatophores deposited ranged between two and five. There was no relationship between male body size and number of spermatophores deposited. Number of spermatophores was positively correlated with the development of secondary sexual characters (as measured by tail height). This relationship reflected the fact that both size of male characters and spermatophore production increased with the length of time into the breeding season, since partialling out the effects of time reveals that there was no relationship between spermatophore production and development of secondary sexual characters. There was no relationship between spermatophore production and development of secondary sexual characters. There was no relationship between body size and degree of development of secondary sexual characters for the above newts, but in another sample taken from a breeding pond, SVL was significantly positively correlated with tail height.

Affiliations: 1: Brain and Behaviour Research Group, Department of Biology, The Open University, Milton Keynes, MK7 6AA, England


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