Friday, August 29, 2014

A potential Jeopardy Question :)


Every once in a while, yours truly stumbles upon a  piece whose title captures the essence of finding out about something that's actually pretty interesting while remaining totally irrelevant to the day to day conducting of anyone's life on planet earth. To that end, I give you...

Researchers identify a pheromone in the urine of male tilapia fish that stimulates spawning in females

The social behavior of Mozambique tilapias (Oreochromis mossambicus) native to southern Africa is very complex. The strict hierarchic ranking among males is fought out in so-called courtship arenas. With their mouths, male tilapias make excavations in the sand in the middle of an arena with the aim of attracting females to spawn in these nests. At the same time, they act aggressively to keep other males away. Dominant males have been observed to urinate more often and squirt larger quantities of urine in the water during fights compared to their subordinate rivals. The urine contains pheromones that reduce aggressive behavior in other males. The compounds also lure females to the nest and modify their hormonal status by accelerating oocyte maturation. Thus the pheromones help to synchronize female spawning and external fertilization by the males and so to increase the odds of reproductive success.

Any questions and... Have a great Labor Day weekend. :)

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