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Short-term dynamics of nest occupancy in an allopaternal species, the tessellated darter Etheostoma olmstedi


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To inquire how male size interacts with alloparental behaviour and mating success in the tessellated darter Etheostoma olmstedi, males were given a choice of nests with or without eggs; subsequent nest occupancy, takeovers and egg deposits were monitored. Subordinate males readily occupied available nests with eggs but were often evicted by dominant males, suggesting that males of all sizes compete for the opportunity to provide allopaternal care in this species.

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