Sperm transfer is affected by mating history in the simultaneously hermaphroditic snail Lymnaea stagnalis.

M.J. Loose, J.M. Koene

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Males are predicted to strategically allocate sperm across mating partners in order to maximize their chances of paternity. This requires that males have the ability to detect aspects of their partner's mating history or the number of potential mates. We investigated whether simultaneous hermaphrodites mating in the male role strategically adjust sperm transfer depending on rearing conditions. The pond snail Lymnaea stagnalis (Basommatophora) is known to donate sperm repeatedly to different partners during a breeding season and store received sperm for >3 months. The rearing conditions of the donor as well as the recipient affect the amount of sperm transferred. Sperm donors raised in isolation transfer more sperm than those raised in groups. Furthermore, isolated sperm donors transfer less sperm to partners that were raised in groups than to those raised in isolation, i.e., virgins. These findings suggest that snails raised in isolation shift their sex allocation toward the male function and indicate that they can somehow assess the mating status of their partner. © 2008, The American Microscopical Society, Inc.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)162-167
JournalInvertebrate Biology
Volume127
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2008

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