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Título

Condition-dependent chemosignals in reproductive behavior of lizards

AutorMartín Rueda, José ; López Martínez, Pilar
Palabras claveReptilia
Lizards
Chemical signals
Physiological mechanisms
Reproductive hormones
Stress hormones
Immune response
Health state
Sexual selection
Fecha de publicación18-jun-2014
EditorElsevier
CitaciónHormones and Behavior 68: 14-24 (2015)
ResumenMany lizards have diverse glands that produce chemosignals used in intraspecific communication and that can have reproductive consequences. For example, information in chemosignals of male lizards can be used in intrasexual competition to identify and assess the fighting potential or dominance status of rivalmales either indirectly through territorial scent-marks or during agonistic encounters.Moreover, females of several lizard species “prefer” to establish or spend more time on areas scent-marked by males with compounds signaling a better health or body condition or a higher genetic compatibility, which can have consequences for their mating success and intersexual selection processes. We review here recent studies that suggest that the information content of chemosignals of lizards may be reliable because several physiological and endocrine processeswould regulate the proportions of chemical compounds available for gland secretions. Because chemosignals are produced by the organism or come from the diet, they should reflect physiological changes, such as different hormonal levels (e.g. testosterone or corticosterone) or different health states (e.g. parasitic infections, immune response), and reflect the quality of the diet of an individual. More importantly, some compounds that may function as chemosignals also have other important functions in the organism (e.g. as antioxidants or regulating the immune system), so there could be trade-offs between allocating these compounds to attending physiological needs or to produce costly sexual “chemical ornaments”. All these factors may contribute to maintain chemosignals as condition-dependent sexual signals, which can inform conspecifics on the characteristics and state of the sender and allowmaking behavioral decisions with reproductive consequences. To understand the evolution of chemical secretions of lizards as sexual signals and their relevance in reproduction, future studies should examine what information the signals are carrying, the physiological processes that can maintain the reliability of the message and how diverse behavioral responses to chemosignals may influence reproductive success.
DescripciónThis article is part of a Special Issue “Chemosignals and Reproduction”.
Versión del editorhttp://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.yhbeh.2014.06.009
URIhttp://hdl.handle.net/10261/117817
DOI10.1016/j.yhbeh.2014.06.009
ISSN0018-506X
E-ISSN1095-6867
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