Sex-specific pace-of-life syndromes

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12 Citations (Scopus)


The pace-of-life syndrome (POLS) hypothesis considers an animal’s behavior, physiology, and life history as nonindependent components of a single integrated phenotype. However, frequent deviations from the expected correlations between POLS traits suggest that these relationships may be context, and potentially, sex dependent. To determine whether the sexes express distinct POLS trait covariance structures, we observed the behavior (mobility, latency to emerge from a shelter), physiology (mass-specific metabolic rate), and life history (life span, development time) of male and female Australian field crickets (Teleogryllus oceanicus). Path analysis modeling suggested that POLS trait covariation differed between the sexes. Although neither sex displayed the complete integration of traits predicted by the POLS hypothesis, females did display greater overall integration with a significant negative correlation between metabolic rate and risk-taking behavior but with life-history traits varying independently. In males, however, there was no clear association between traits. These results suggest that T. oceanicus do indeed display sex-specific trait covariance structures, emphasizing the importance of acknowledging sex in assessments of POLS.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1096-1105.
JournalBehavioral Ecology
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 3 Jul 2019


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