Abstract Detail



Sexual selection in flowering plants: traits, processes, and estimation

Sanderson, Brian [1], Augat, Malcolm [2], Duncan, Matthew [3], Olson, Matt [4], Brodie III, Edmund [2].

Sex ratio drives differences in sexual selection between male and female components of fitness in Silene vulgaris.

The sex ratio of a population defines the context in which sexual selection occurs because it determines the pool of available mates. Populations of gynodioecious plants typically exhibit extreme variation in sex ratio, which should result in variation in the fitness of individuals and also in the strength and direction of selection on floral traits. In this study we experimentally varied the sex ratio of Silene vulgaris and quantified selection through both the female and male components of fitness. We found that sex ratio strongly affected the fitness of individuals in the population through both female and male fitness components. Further, the strength and direction of selection on floral traits differed markedly between the sexes across the sex ratios. In addition to differences in selection between the sexes, there was also conflict between the male and female components of fitness in hermaphrodites that was context-dependent. These findings confirm long-standing expectations from the theoretical literature on the evolution of plant mating systems, and present novel insight into how social context can contribute to the maintenance of sexual polymorphism in wild populations.


1 - Purdue University, 915 West State Street, West Lafayette, IN, 47907, United States
2 - University of Virginia, Mountain Lake Biological Station and Department of Biology, 485 McCormick Road, Charlottesville, VA, 22904, USA
3 - Texas Tech University, Biological Sciences, 2901 Main St, Lubbock, TX, 79409, USA
4 - Texas Tech University, Biological Sciences, Lubbock, TX, 79409, USA

Keywords:
sex ratio
gynodioecy
Sexual selection
Silene vulgaris.

Presentation Type: Colloquium Presentations
Number: 0013
Abstract ID:575
Candidate for Awards:None


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