Guppy populations differ not only in their mating tactics but also in how they make their investment in reproduction. Life history traits such as age and size at maturity, number and size of offspring, vary markedly between populations. Much of this variation is a consequence of predation risk, but other environmental factors such as food availability, seasonality, fish density, and temperature are also important. This chapter explains why the Trinidadian system has proved an invaluable test of life history theory. It examines population differences in phenotypic plasticity and discusses age-related changes in reproductive behaviour. The consequences of key life history decisions for mating success in both males and females are also considered.
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