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Sound production during courtship and spawning of Oreochromis mossambicus: male–female and male–male interactions

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The role of sound production of the Mozambique tilapia Oreochromis mossambicus in agonistic and mating interactions observed during hierarchy formation and in established groups was examined. Only territorial males produced sounds, during male–female and male–male courtship interactions and during pit-related activities (e.g. dig, hover and still in the nest). Sound production rate was positively correlated with courting rate. Although sounds in other cichlids are typically emitted in early stages of courtship, O. mossambicus produced sounds in all phases, but especially during late stages of courtship, including spawning. It is suggested that the acoustic emissions in this species may play a role in advertising the presence and spawning readiness of males and in synchronizing gamete release.
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Keywords: Cichlidae; acoustic communication; teleosts; territorial behaviour

Document Type: Regular Paper

Affiliations: 1: Unidade de Investigação em Eco-etologia. I.S.P.A., Rua Jardim do Tabaco 34, 1149-041 Lisboa, Portugal and 2: Departamento de Zoologia e Antropologia, Faculdade de Ciências de Lisboa. Bloco C2 Campo Grande, 1749-016 Lisboa, Portugal

Publication date: 01 March 2003

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