Data for: Environmental complexity mitigates the demographic impact of sexual selection
- 1. Uppsala University
Sexual selection and the evolution of costly mating strategies can negatively impact population demography and adaptive potential. While laboratory studies have documented outcomes stemming from these processes, theory suggests that the demographic impact of sexual selection is contingent on the environment and therefore may have been overestimated in simple laboratory settings. Here we find support for this claim. We exposed copies of beetle lines, previously evolved with or without sexual selection, to a 10-generation heatwave while maintaining half of them in a simple environment and the other half in a complex environment. Populations with an evolutionary history of sexual selection maintained larger sizes and more stable growth rates in complex (relative to simple) environments, an effect not seen in populations that evolved without sexual selection. These results have implications for evolutionary forecasting and suggest that the demographic impact of sexual selection in natural populations might be lower than predicted.
- Is source of
- 10.5061/dryad.bzkh189g8 (DOI)