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SEXUAL HARASSMENT AS A COST FOR MOLLY FEMALES: BIGGER MALES COST LESS

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Females of many species receive male attention that reflects a conflict between the sexes over reproduction. Here we demonstrate that female sailfin mollies (Poecilia latipinna) suffer such a cost via a reduction of their feeding time in the presence of males. Female sailfin mollies spend significantly more time feeding when accompanied by an Amazon molly (P.formosa) or a sailfin molly female than when accompanied by a male sailfin molly. Furthermore, we show that male sexual harassment is size dependent and that small males impose a greater cost on females.

Affiliations: 1: University of Texas, Section of Integrative Biology C 0930, Austin, TX 78712, USA; Universität Hamburg, Zoologisches Institut und Zoologisches Museum, Martin-Luther-King Platz 3, D-20146 Hamburg; 2: University of Texas, Section of Integrative Biology C 0930, Austin, TX 78712, USA

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