Male spotted bowerbirds propagate fruit for use in their sexual display

Madden, Joah R., Dingle, Caroline, Isden, Jess, Sparteld, Janka, Goldizen, Anne W. and Endler, John A. (2012) Male spotted bowerbirds propagate fruit for use in their sexual display. Current Biology, 22 8: R264-R265. doi:10.1016/j.cub.2012.02.057

Author Madden, Joah R.
Dingle, Caroline
Isden, Jess
Sparteld, Janka
Goldizen, Anne W.
Endler, John A.
Title Male spotted bowerbirds propagate fruit for use in their sexual display
Journal name Current Biology   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0960-9822
Publication date 2012-04
Sub-type Letter to editor, brief commentary or brief communication
DOI 10.1016/j.cub.2012.02.057
Volume 22
Issue 8
Start page R264
End page R265
Total pages 2
Place of publication Cambridge, MA, United States
Publisher Cell Press
Collection year 2013
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Cultivation may be described as a process of co-evolution and niche construction, with two species developing a mutualistic relationship through association, leading to coordinated change [1]. Cultivation is rare but taxonomically widespread, benefiting the cultivator, usually through increased access to food, and the cultivar, by improved growth and protection, driving co-evolutionary changes (Supplemental information). Humans cultivate more than food, producing clothing, construction materials, fuel, drugs, and ornaments. A population of male spotted bowerbirds Ptilonorhynchus (Chlamydera) maculata uses fruits of Solanum ellipticum (Figure 1A), not as food but as important components of their sexual display [2,3]. Here, we show that males indirectly cultivate plants bearing these fruit - the first example of cultivation of a non-food item by a species other than humans. Plants appear at bowers following male occupation (Figure 1B). Males benefit, exhibiting more fruit at their bowers. Plants benefit because fruit are deposited in better germination sites. Fruits from plants near bowers differ visually from those far from bowers, and look more similar to fruits that are preferred by males in choice tests.
Keyword Good predictors
Mating success
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ
Additional Notes "Correspondence"

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Letter to editor, brief commentary or brief communication
Collections: Official 2013 Collection
School of Biological Sciences Publications
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