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German Journal of Herpetology

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Liao, W. B., J. M. Zhong, C. Cheng, L. Jin & Z. J. Wu

In Issues 2017

No evidence of phenotypic selection on large females leading to female-biased sexual size dimorphism in the frog Polypedates megacephalus. pp. 231-236.

Abstract. Sexual size dimorphism (SSD), the difference in body size between males and females, is a widespread phenomenon and commonly attributed to variation in sex-specific patterns of selection. Using data from three populations of Polypedates megacephalus, we tested the hypotheses that sexual selection favoured large male body size and that fecundity selection favoured large female size. Females had a larger body size than males in all populations and thus exhibited a female-biased sexual size dimorphism. Standardized selection gradients showed that sexual selection for large male size was weak at best and hence unlikely to be an important driving force for SSD. As fecundity selection favouring large females was weak as well, it could not explain the female-biased SSD patterns found. However, a faster growth rate in females favoured a larger size, providing an explanation for female-biased SSD. Our findings suggest that female-biased SSD does not result from a phenotypic selection of female by size in P. megacephalus.
Key words. Amphibia, Anura, Rhacophoridae, fecundity selection, sexual selection, sexual size dimorphism.