Cookies Policy

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse the site you are agreeing to our use of cookies.

I accept this policy

Find out more here

Experience overrides colour in lizard contests

No metrics data to plot.
The attempt to load metrics for this article has failed.
The attempt to plot a graph for these metrics has failed.
The full text of this article is not currently available.

Brill’s MyBook program is exclusively available on BrillOnline Books and Journals. Students and scholars affiliated with an institution that has purchased a Brill E-Book on the BrillOnline platform automatically have access to the MyBook option for the title(s) acquired by the Library. Brill MyBook is a print-on-demand paperback copy which is sold at a favorably uniform low price.

Access this article

+ Tax (if applicable)
Add to Favorites
You must be logged in to use this functionality

image of Behaviour

We examined the role of conspicuous coloration in male-male contests for two species of Australian dragon lizards, Ctenophorus decresii and C. vadnappa, in which conspicuous coloration has a demonstrated predation cost. We conducted contests in which the overall conspicuousness of male coloration was manipulated using paints that matched the spectral reflectance of the lizards, as well as natural (control) contests. There was little evidence for an influence of colour on contest outcome or aggression levels for either species when all experiments were considered. However, we found a significant effect of trial order and experience on contest outcome and aggression levels (the same pair of males was used for both types of contest), despite a 2-3 week interval between contests. When we examined only the first trial between unfamiliar males, we found that male C. vadnappa that had been painted to appear more conspicuous consistently won. Comparison with the natural trials suggests that the aspect of colour manipulation that was responsible for this result was the 'hue' of the throat: males with yellower throats consistently beat males with bluer throats in both natural and painted trials. The difference in coloration of flank markings also predicted the difference in aggression scores between contestants in the natural trials. These results suggest that although colour is important in opponent assessment and in determining contest outcome in C. vadnappa, previous agonistic experience can override the effects of colour and have a long-lasting influence on aggressive behaviour.


Full text loading...


Data & Media loading...

Article metrics loading...



Can't access your account?
  • Tools

  • Add to Favorites
  • Printable version
  • Email this page
  • Subscribe to ToC alert
  • Get permissions
  • Recommend to your library

    You must fill out fields marked with: *

    Librarian details
    Your details
    Why are you recommending this title?
    Select reason:
    Behaviour — Recommend this title to your library
  • Export citations
  • Key

  • Full access
  • Open Access
  • Partial/No accessInformation