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A. borellii thesis abstract

Many of you were interested in my undergraduate thesis. Here is the
abstract from my presentation at the 15th Annual Cameron Conference held
in Halifax last month. 

Title: Investigation of Environmental Sex Determination and Behaviours in
Apistogramma borellii (Cichlidae).

Author: Jonathan Fung
Supervisor: Dr Jeff Hutchings

Programme: Concentrated Marine Biology                

Department of Biology, 
Dalhousie University


Alternate male reproductive strategies are known for the South American
Cichlid Apistogramma borellii, although detailed descriptions of the
reproductive behaviours, roles, and social structure are lacking. This
study describes the behaviours of this species thoroughly for the first
time. Documentation of their behaviours may elucidate social structure and
relative reproductive success of specific roles. 

Various studies have found that the sex ratio in developing A. borellii
broods can be influenced by pH and temperature. However, these studies
have ignored various pH values. This study will investigate the effects of
various pH conditions, and its interaction with temperature in the sex
determination of the developing A. borellii. Furthermore, since previous
studies were vulnerable to small sample sizes, replication of their
results would prove meaningful. 
Previous work failed to find temperature and pH spatial variations
throughout the natural range of A. borellii. The current study will review
the seasonal rain regime of A. borellii's habitat, and discuss variation
of environmental sex determinant cues with respect to time. By examining
the roles and social structure in A. borellii, it may be possible to
identify their adaptive significance at specific times throughout the
seasonal regime.

Jonathan Fung... Reef Geek
Dalhousie University Honours Marine Biology
Aqua Creations Inc. Assistant Manager
writer for Marine Fish Monthly 

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