Home / Female Centered Mate Selections as an Explanatory Mechanism for Dimorphic Solutions in a Rock-Paper-Scissors Game

Female Centered Mate Selections as an Explanatory Mechanism for Dimorphic Solutions in a Rock-Paper-Scissors Game

Side-blotched lizards, Uta stansburiana, exhibit trimorphic male throat-colors (orange,
blue, or yellow). In terms of mating, the males participate in an apparent game of rock-paper-
scissors determined by throat color (i.e., a cyclic dominance chain). Mathematical models of
this behavior predict stable monomorphic and trimorphic populations. However, researchers
have observed stable dimorphic populations of orange and blue males. Furthermore, it is
postulated that the only large-scale, long-term, stable solutions exclude the yellow throat
type. We propose a new mathematical model accounting for the female population available
for mating that may exhibits such behavior. We discuss the conditions under which particular
population configurations are stable and ow attractive. We use these results to motivate
conservative methods that may mitigate biodiversity loss by preventing the decline of a
particular monomorphic or dimorphic population.

Article Number: MTBI-12-04 

Year: 2015

Authors:
Abena S. B. Annor - University of Florida, Gainesville 
Kelly R. Buch - Southern Illinois University of Edwardsville
Daniel A. Rodriguez-Pinzon - Universidad de Los Andes
Michael R. Lin - Arizona State University
Kamaldeen Okuneye - Arizona State University
Benjamin R. Morin - Arizona State University

explanatory_mechanism_for_dimorphic_solutions.pdf