Evidence for male-biased dispersal in Lake Malawi cichlids from microsatellites


M. E. Knight. E-mail:mek@soton.ac.uk


This study addressed within-population dispersal patterns among the species-rich Lake Malawi cichlids, specifically among the rock-dwelling mbuna group. Relatedness values were calculated for 160 individuals belonging to two species from known locations in the field by screening six highly polymorphic microsatellite loci. The results from both species indicate that spatially adjacent females have higher average relatedness values than those separated by larger distances, but that this pattern is reversed in males. This therefore provides firm evidence for male-biased dispersal within the Malawian cichlid flock.