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Wild Guppies Research Paper

Decent Essays
Instructor: Dr. Gingerich
PCB 4674: Evolutionary Biology
August 26, 2016 In 1957 C. P. Haskin transferred 200 guppies from the Caroni drainage to the Oropuche drainage with the intent of studying the morphological variation of guppies. However, the guppies’ behavior within their environment was not within the scope of his studies. In 1992, A.E. Magurran, B.H. Seghers, G.R. Carvalho and P.W. Shaw built on Haskin work by investigating “…whether the anti-predator behavior of wild guppies has been modified by a change in selection regime” (Magurran et al., 1992) by publishing Behavioral consequences of an artificial introduction of guppies (Poecilia reticulate) in N. Trinidad: evidence for the evolution of anti- predator behavior in the wild.
The authors selected seven guppy populations to perform their experiment. These
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The first configuration contained two 1L bottles inside of a tank. The bottles were placed on opposite sides of the tank. One of the bottles only contained water, while the other contained a school of six inter-population hybrid guppies. The second configuration only contained the bottle that houses the school of guppies. This bottle was placed on one side of the tank, and a predator model was placed in the center of the tank. In both configurations, one guppy from one of the seven aforementioned populations was placed into the tank and its behavior was observed.
Two guppy behaviors were observed during the experiment: schooling behavior and inspection behavior. Schooling behavior is defined as the test guppy’s tendency to stay within five body lengths of the “school”. Inspection behavior occurs when the test guppy approaches and becomes visually-fixated on the predator model (Magurran et al., 1992). During this occurrence, the authors recorded if the guppy approached the predator model from the school side. The authors also recorded how closely the test guppy approached the predator
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