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Sexual size and shape dimorphism in the Near Eastern fire salamander, Salamandra infraimmaculata (Caudata: Salamandridae)

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image of Animal Biology

Sexual dimorphism, phenotypic difference between males and females of the same species, has been demonstrated in many invertebrates and vertebrates. In many of these studies, which were especially conducted on amphibians, female individuals were reported to be larger than males. However, this does not necessarily mean that this also applies to body shapes. Therefore, in this study, a total of 31 characters of body size and body shape were measured and analyzed in the Near Eastern fire salamander, in order to understand whether these characters differ between female and male individuals. The results suggest that there is a significant difference between the sexes in terms of both body size and some body shapes (e.g. arm and leg length, arm diameter, cloacal proportions) in this fire salamander. I conclude that both sexual size and shape dimorphism need to be taken into account to help understand an organism’s life-history traits, ecology, population dynamics and behavior.

Affiliations: 1: Recep Tayyip Erdoğan University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences, Biology Department, Rize, Turkey


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