Meeting Abstract

41.6  Thursday, Jan. 5  The impact of color on egg laying rates and outcrossing of Kryptolebias marmoratus BERNHARDT, L.*; BECHLER, D.L.; RING, B.C.; ELDER, J.F.; Valdosta State University; Valdosta State University; Valdosta State University; Valdosta State University lbernhardt@valdosta.edu

Kryptolebias marmoratus participates in a reproductive system involving androdioecy in which populations are composed of hermaphrodites and males where self-fertilization or outcrossing can occur. As result of self-fertilization, it is possible to develop nearly 100% homozygous strains or reestablish heterozygosity via outcrossing between a hermaphrodite and a male. Because these fish are widely used in many aspects of research, the need for eggs is great. My research examines background color and its relationship to movement patterns, egg laying and outcrossing. Prior to beginning this research, I assessed lag time of untested strains to determine position on a shy/bold continuum. From this, five strains (R2, HON 7, SSRHL, SLC8E, and VOL) were selected to cover differing geographical origins and levels of shyness and boldness. All five strains have been tested for activity and movements as a function of color preference. The rate of movement patterns matched the shy/bold order previously established. Color preference tests showed black was most preferred and white least preferred. The results of egg production using black and white backgrounds with the five strains have revealed a daily cyclical pattern of egg laying and sudden bursts of egg laying upon changing background color. Currently, experiments are being conducted to see if color influences outcrossing rates. This work is important because it will increase our knowledge so as to better understand the impact of color on egg laying and its potential to establish heterozygosity via outcrossing of K. marmoratus.