Rodrigues et al. (online first): Reproductive behavior of the Amazonian dwarf cichlid Apistogramma hippolytae Kullander, 1982: offsetting costs and benefits. Acta ethologica.
The reproduction trade-off for an animal is a conflicting choice in which resources (e.g., time and/or energy) allocated to one reproduction trait (e.g., parental care) become unavailable to other traits (e.g., future reproduction events). Here, we tested three hypotheses related to the parental care of the Amazonian dwarf cichlid Apistogramma hippolytae in its natural habitat of Central Amazonia: (1) brood-caring females have a lower feeding frequency than individuals that are not involved in this behavior; (2) females that spend more time on nest defense have lower feeding rates; and (3) females can recognize the species that present the greatest danger to its offspring and move farther from the nest to chase away these piscivorous fishes. We also described for the first time the reproductive behavior (including courtship) and parental care of this species. The results showed that maternal care produces a reduction in the rate of feeding of mothers, a greater amount of time is spent chasing invaders away from the nest, and reproductive females are able to distinguish species-specific predators. These observations support the hypotheses of this study and also suggest a trade-off between current and future reproduction events.