Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Sex, Size and Gender RolesEvolutionary Studies of Sexual Size Dimorphism$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Daphne J. Fairbairn, Wolf U. Blanckenhorn, and Tamás Székely

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780199208784

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2007

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199208784.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.oxfordscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use (for details see www.oxfordscholarship.com/page/privacy-policy).date: 16 December 2018

Introduction: the enigma of sexual size dimorphism

Introduction: the enigma of sexual size dimorphism

(p.1) Chapter 1 Introduction: the enigma of sexual size dimorphism
Sex, Size and Gender Roles

Daphne J. Fairbairn

Oxford University Press

This introductory chapter opens by describing general patterns of variation in sexual size dimorphism (SSD), with emphasis on several taxa (plants, fishes, and aquatic invertebrates) not included in the survey chapters that follow. It also highlights recently documented examples of extreme SSD, such as Lamprologus callipterus, a shell-brooding cichlid fish, where males are >12 times heavier than females, and the blanket octopus (Tremoctopus violaceous), where females can be 40,000 times larger than the dwarf males. The chapter then develops the two major integrative themes of the book: discovering the adaptive significance of SSD and determining the importance of genetic constraints in shaping its evolution. After briefly summarizing the contributions of the chapters to these themes, the chapter closes by discussing methodological difficulties associated with estimating adult body size and SSD in natural populations.

Keywords:   adaptive significance, dwarf males, evolution, genetic constraint

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .