Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Urine sprays during courtship send mixed messages

Date:
March 30, 2010
Source:
BioMed Central
Summary:
Walking through urine drives crayfish into an aggressive sexual frenzy. Researchers suggest that a urine-mediated combination of aggressive and reproductive behavior ensures that only the strongest males get to mate.

Two crayfish fight in a cloud of visualized urine.
Credit: Fiona Berry

Walking through urine drives crayfish into an aggressive sexual frenzy. Researchers writing in the open access journal BMC Biology suggest that a urine-mediated combination of aggressive and reproductive behaviour ensures that only the strongest males get to mate.

Fiona Berry and Thomas Breithaupt from the University of Hull, UK, investigated the effects of urine-based chemical signaling on sexually active crayfish. Breithaupt said, "Our results confirm that females initiate courtship behavior; males will only attempt to mate if they receive urinary signals from the female. Females, however, send a mixed message by releasing an aphrodisiac while also acting very aggressively towards the males."

Females could profit in different ways from displaying such conflicting signals. By stimulating aggressive behaviour in males, females can gauge male size and strength and thereby ensure that only the fittest males get to fertilise their eggs.

According to the researchers, "Timing seems to be key to this interaction as urine induces aggression in both sexes. Males will discontinue urine release early in the sexual encounter, which may mitigate the female's antagonism and enhance mating success."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by BioMed Central. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Fiona C Berry and Thomas Breithaupt. To signal or not to signal? Chemical communication by urine-borne signals mirrors sexual conflict in crayfish. BMC Biology, (in press) [link]

Cite This Page:

BioMed Central. "Urine sprays during courtship send mixed messages." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 30 March 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/03/100329203232.htm>.
BioMed Central. (2010, March 30). Urine sprays during courtship send mixed messages. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 30, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/03/100329203232.htm
BioMed Central. "Urine sprays during courtship send mixed messages." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/03/100329203232.htm (accessed July 30, 2014).

Share This




More Plants & Animals News

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Raw: Thousands Flocking to German Crop Circle

Raw: Thousands Flocking to German Crop Circle

AP (July 30, 2014) Thousands of people are trekking to a Bavarian farmer's field to check out a mysterious set of crop circles. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Concern Grows Over Worsening Ebola Crisis

Concern Grows Over Worsening Ebola Crisis

AFP (July 30, 2014) Pan-African airline ASKY has suspended all flights to and from the capitals of Liberia and Sierra Leone amid the worsening Ebola health crisis, which has so far caused 672 deaths in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. Duration: 00:43 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
At Least 20 Chikungunya Cases in New Jersey

At Least 20 Chikungunya Cases in New Jersey

AP (July 30, 2014) At least 20 New Jersey residents have tested positive for chikungunya, a mosquito-borne virus that has spread through the Caribbean. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Otters Enjoy Water Slides at Japan Zoo

Raw: Otters Enjoy Water Slides at Japan Zoo

AP (July 30, 2014) River otters were hitting the water slides to beat the summer heatwave on Wednesday at Ichikawa City's Zoological and Botanical Garden. (July 30) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins