Mjpauers: I have never done one of these before,
so please be patient with me!
why_spyder: Mike, not a problem :)
StructureGuy: No way. We will be picking on you from the
mjpauers: Also, I don't want to just barge in
and start pontificating - I can start whenever you guys are ready.
mjpauers: Shall I begin?
StructureGuy: Sure. Tell us a little about yourself.
mjpauers: Again, I am not well-versed in the
protocol for these things, so let me know when you want me to start, or
ZK1975: I'm here, so anytime you want
now, Mike ;)
AmayaOkami: nice Z
StructureGuy: The organization is up to you. It's loosely
organized and very informal
mjpauers: Well, I am Mike Pauers, and I hold a
Ph.D. in the behavior and evolution of fishes, especially Malawian mbuna, and
especially the Labeotropheus.
mjpauers: Brian asked me a few weeks ago to
talk about my research.
mjpauers: But, there was actually a very cool
new finding in mbuna taxonomy this week that I'd like to share with you first.
mjpauers: It has nothing to do with
mjpauers: Michael K. Oliver, who runs
www.malawicichlids.com, and who is an excellent taxonomist, has been working
with Melanochromis labrosus for years.
mjpauers: He and Matthew Arnegard, another cichlid
guy, have placed labrosus in a new genus!
StructureGuy: The not-so-beautiful mbuna with the big lips
mjpauers: So, we now should refer to that fish
as Abactochromis labrosus.
mjpauers: Yes, the big-lipped one. As a matter
of fact, that is the primary character they used to place it in its own genus!
ZK1975: Abacto, meaning?
mjpauers: Good question!
mjpauers: Abacto is Latin for "driven
away" or "banished", referring to the fact that it is no longer
mjpauers: I love etymology! I studied 4.5 years
of Latin in HS and undergrad!
mjpauers: Its part of what makes me interested
in taxonomy: you get to make up new words!
ZK1975: I figured it would have meant
big lipped, but didn't hurt to ask
StructureGuy: So is labrosus a paedophage?
mjpauers: Oliver posted the paper on
malawicichlids.com, in the Bibliography section, so you can all get a copy -
mjpauers: Another good question!
mjpauers: AFAIK, labrosus uses its lips to suck
inverts out of rocks, just like many big-lipped fish.
ZK1975: i.e. VC-10?
why_spyder: For those that don't know, paedophage means
One that eats or consumes the young of other species.
mjpauers: Big lips seem to be an example of
convergent evolution - all fish with them use them in a similar fashion.
why_spyder: Z, yes - Placidochromis milomo
mjpauers: VC-10, I believe, is a paedophage. I
know it is pretty darn predatory.
PhishNFilly: can somebody flip up a pic of this fish
mjpauers: I don't type so fast, either!
mjpauers: I have the .pdf in front of me, so I
could cut and paste...if I knew where to paste it...
PhishNFilly: paste into where you see yourself typing
PhishNFilly: under the word here.
why_spyder: shame on you Z - that is forbidden!
mikeynashy: zk that says forbidden
ZK1975: well HMM
mjpauers: Hold on - getting image...
PhishNFilly: ty mike
ZK1975: Am I wrong for remembering
perhaps tank raised milomo do not get the big lips? Sorry if Iím detouring off
subject a bit.
mjpauers: Ummm...not working so well. You'll
have to trust me that itís there!
why_spyder: Z - that is what I have heard as well.
StructureGuy: So along the same lines. People say that
Labeotropheus looses it's odd "nose" in the aquarium after a few
generations. Is that true and how long does it actually take. They say the same
about the big-lipped fish
mjpauers: I have never heard that tank-raised
milomo lack the lips. Though it would be possible, I guess. But red devils
maintain their lips in captivity...
mjpauers: About Labeotropheus in captivity:
mjpauers: They do maintain their characteristic
morphology, including the snout.
mjpauers: Many years ago, it was noticed that
in big community displays, like at zoos and aquaria, Labeotropheus would
"lose" their snouts.
why_spyder: Would you say that the nose size is
affected by whether or not they graze much while in captivity?
ZK1975: I do love the gonzo'd nose fish
Glaive: the paper and an image (link for transcript
should be given proper credit) http://malawicichlids.com/mw09004.htm
mjpauers: What was going on was that the Labeos
were hybridizing with other mbuna.
mjpauers: Thanks for link, Glaive!
mjpauers: I have done quite a bit of work on
morphology with captive and wild generations of Labeos, and have found little
effect of captive life on snout morphology.
mjpauers: Labeos seem to graze wherever and
whenever they can, including off the sides of their tank.
StructureGuy: Is a characteristic like the "nose"
more fixed in the mbuna than it is for fish like Victorians where they have not
had as much time to evolve?
mjpauers: So, I think they get enough use of it
Glaive: would you conclude that they are thus an older
species with more hardset morphology, as opposed to some Victorians which
change jaw structure very quickly?
mjpauers: Good questions!
mjpauers: I differ from other researchers in
that I _think_ that the Labeos are probably a pretty young genus.
mjpauers: I think that their trophic morphology
became fixed pretty quickly in evolution, but they are continuing to diverge to
mjpauers: Some work by R. Craig Albertson (a
neat guy!) demonstrated that mbuna trophic morphology evolved pretty early on
in the Lake Malawi radiation...
bmiller816: ok so Iím going to ask a question
thatís differs from person to person, but how often should I feed my fish?
mjpauers: ...but that the fish are still
diverging wrt sexually-selected traits. And that is one of my primary areas of
StructureGuy: There are still only the two species of
Labeotropheus, right? Or are you seeing some other potential splits?
mjpauers: Feed your fish every day. Or, if
you're like me, once every 4 days...
mjpauers: I am interested in examining that
very question, StructureGuy.
ZK1975: I kept Trewavasae, myself. Love
mjpauers: I have examined a couple of
populations of L. fuelleborni, and I am certain that they are different
mjpauers: And I think that it is very likely
that every population with a divergent male coloration represents a different
mjpauers: Ad Konings does not agree with me,
AmayaOkami: how so?
Glaive: do you see any physical structure differences?
Glaive: between males of different populations?
mjpauers: This might take a while to get
through. Be patient with me as I try to organize my thoughts...and type them!
StructureGuy: I thought that color isn't much of a reason
to split into another genus although the Labeo's sure come in many colors.
ZK1975: They sure do, SG.
mjpauers: So, it has been known for a while
that many cichlids use male nuptial (breeding) colors to select mates.
mjpauers: In other words, females not only
select mates based on coloration, but, what is really happening is that they
are using colors to identify which species is which.
mjpauers: So, from the perspective of a female,
she may have what ecologists call a "search image."
mjpauers: Basically, she has an ingrained set
of rules she uses that might go like this:
StructureGuy: Yea, I heard that one reason given for
hybridization in Lake Victoria. The murky water is confusing mate selection.
mjpauers: "Well, he's in the right
habitat, he's eating the right stuff, and he's wearing the right colors - he's
SabrinaD: I believe I've seen that in my own
mjpauers: So, I think that coloration really is
a badge of species--status in these fishes. And that's not unusual among
scientists to think that.
ZK1975: Correct color, but wrong pattern
would make a difference, though right? Or am I reading too deeply in that
little female thought?
mjpauers: But, the Labeotropheus have been a
problem in this regard.
mjpauers: ZK1975 - Exactomundo!
mjpauers: How many of you have heard the name
SabrinaD: so color would be more important
than pattern to female?
StructureGuy: Is Exactomundo one of those fancy Latin
Glaive: the name rings a bell, but where exactly I
why_spyder: Mike, not I
mjpauers: StructureGuy -:d
mjpauers: Hey! I figured out how to do one of
those damn smiley things!
PhishNFilly: A + mj
StructureGuy: Now you're one of us
mjpauers: Ribbink is famous for performing the
first comprehensive survey of mbuna ecology.
mjpauers: One of us...one of us...one of us...
michael r: Iím
still working on the smiley thing my self
mjpauers: Ribbink and his coworkers were kind
of overwhelmed by all the Labeotropheus they found.
mjpauers: So, they made a snap judgment that
has been misinterpreted over and over again by many cichlid workers.
mjpauers: They basically said that if it is
deep-bodied and lives in the shallows, it is L. fuelleborni, and if it is
slender and deep-dwelling, it is L. trewavasae.
mjpauers: They also said that they were making
this distinction out of convenience, and that the Labeotropheus really need
more work and attention than they could afford to give at the time.
StructureGuy: Wow. That's pretty much how we hobbyists tell
mjpauers: So, many workers have forgot about
that last proviso, and have just assumed that shallow = fuelleborni, deep =
trewavasae, and that's it.
mjpauers: And it is a handy little rule of
thumb. But, like all rules of thumb, it is basically false, or at least
Glaive: so people were working on half of the proper
mjpauers: Itís kind of a logical fallacy. It is
defining something based on what it isn't, which is really poor taxonomic
mjpauers: Glaive - yes!
mjpauers: Itís like saying, "Well, there
are two colors, red and blue. Since you are wearing a shirt that is not blue,
it must, therefore, be red."
StructureGuy: Any insight on why some female trewavasae are
blotched and others aren't? It always seemed like that would be consistent.
AmayaOkami: ok now I understand this
mjpauers: Or, itís like the Sith - there can be
mikeynashy: ty Pauers for the example lol
sepratbill: my females are blotchy
mjpauers: The female polychromatism is an
Glaive: in this specific instance we the hobbyist are
looking at a body shape and disregarding the depth the fish was found at (which
we likely do not know)
ZK1975: Oh, Glaive.. that's a form of
that one thing u taught me the other day about the bad Italian singer thing,
mjpauers: It kind of sets the stage for male
mate choice, which hasn't been demonstrated all that often in the mbuna.
mjpauers: Glaive - right again.
ZK1975: Welcome Pam!
ZK1975: *bows to the Cichlid Queen*
mjpauers: There are many pop's of Labeotropheus
with a female polychromatism.
mjpauers: Usually, there is a gray or brown
form, and a blotched or OB form.
mjpauers: Ole Seehausen has worked out some of
the genetics behind this, and has shown how this leads to marmalade cat males
in populations, too.
mjpauers: Sorry - trying to remember where this
ZK1975: Female color variations ;)
mjpauers: Oh - I got it!
why_spyder: How prevalent is it to find females in one
population to show both the 'standard' dull coloration alongside the OB morph?
mjpauers: It is probably more common than we
mjpauers: In the two pops I work with, there is
a female color polychromatism in each.
mjpauers: Anyway, this whole color thing...
mjpauers: ...it is basically a stepping-stone
StructureGuy: I think we could talk to Mike all night long.
One question leads to another.
mikeynashy: thatís a good thing
mjpauers: I'm very happy you are enjoying this!
mjpauers: I love the questions!
ZK1975: I've got all night.. Iím
learning new things
mjpauers: I hope I am answering them all!
why_spyder: Mike - you are really doing well:)
Glaive: in the case of polychromatism that would be
many colored ( note for transcript and any who did not know)
AmayaOkami: yes Mike I am actually understanding some
when you use examples
mjpauers: So, if a female cannot recognize a
male as a potential mate, he's not going to mate.
mjpauers: Or, conversely, if a male is the
"wrong" color, the females won't recognize him as a mate.
mjpauers: Thanks for the compliments and
mjpauers: I'll try to be more specific, and
give examples when I can.
StructureGuy: So how big a role is mitochondrial (whew,
spelling) DNA playing in all this? Is it the end all and be all to
classification? Doesn't sound like it.
ZK1975: So are there several variations
in colorations of same genus/species that doesn't necessarily denote collection
mjpauers: This is what interests me the most:
How do fish see color, and how do they use it in their day-to-day lives,
especially with a characteristic known to be so important to the evolution of
mjpauers: mtDNA, and molecular genetic in
general, is very tricky with African cichlids.
AmayaOkami: is it known yet the spectrum of what fish can
mjpauers: Basically, they've evolved so quickly
that it is only in the past 10 years that we have developed consistently
reliable tools to help us differentiate different species and populations.
mjpauers: ZK - I am reading your question...
mjpauers: ZK - yes. There are a few species in
which the color may be the same among pops. Is that what you were asking?
mjpauers: Amaya - yes!
mjpauers: There are two different types of
mbuna color vision.
mjpauers: On is generally called "violet
mjpauers: Fish like this - like Melanochromis -
see a somewhat more abbreviated spectrum than we can.
mjpauers: They see violet up to orange or so.
mjpauers: Then, there is what is generally
called "ultraviolet sensitive."
mjpauers: These fish - like Labeotropheus,
Metriaclima - have ultraviolet sensitivity, which is pretty cool!
AmayaOkami: that is
mjpauers: They see a spectrum from UVb (~370nm)
up to, say, yellows.
SabrinaD: would vision range help
mjpauers: That's the very question I want to
work out, Sabrina! Or, at least, one of them.
SabrinaD: how can you test vision range?
mjpauers: It appears that, largely, color
sensitivity is somewhat related to genus.
mjpauers: There are a number of ways to examine
mjpauers: One way - which takes a lot of time -
is to "ask" the fish themselves.
sepratbill: ooo! do you speak mbuna?
Glaive: light spectrum image
mjpauers: And what I mean by that is give them
color-related tasks for which they get a reward if they do it right.
PhishNFilly: gwon lffn
StructureGuy: Isn't there a consistent way to differentiate
species, or are there a lot of opinions about what criteria to use. I always
thought it was mostly teeth, fin counts and body shape.
mjpauers: Thanks, Glaive!
mjpauers: StructureGuy - I'll get to your
question in a sec - itís a very good one!
mjpauers: But, you can also perform an
electroretinogram on the fish, which is something you may have had done at the
ZK1975: Well I was basing the question
upon all the Labeos' color morph issues and just was wandering about the idea
that there are two say.. L. Trewavasae that are from the same collection point
but are of different colorations. I guess at that point they'd be considered a
separate species? Sorry for the huge delay I wanted to ask it in the least
stupid sounding way possible.:)
mjpauers: The ERG detects brain activity in
response to different wavelengths of light.
mjpauers: But you can also kind of find out
from gene expression experiments what kind of opsins (light sensitive molecules
in the eye) the fish have. Or any organism, for that matter.
ZK1975: Ok here's a dumb question then
with all the violet/ultraviolet sensitive fish.. is this the reason why there
isn't much fish color to choose that fall in the unseen range?
mjpauers: ZK - good clarification - thanks! But
Structure Guy gets his answer first!
ZK1975: yessir ;)
StructureGuy: Wow. I can't imagine these relatively little
fish having a retina scan and brain scan.
mjpauers: Structure Guy: There is old taxonomic
practice, which depends on fin ray counts, scale counts, etc.
mjpauers: But, nowadays, as a friend of mine
has told me, we need to get a bit more creative with our taxonomic practice.
SabrinaD: but we now know that there is more
to fish than fins and scales LOL
mjpauers: Plus, we are now encouraged to use
characters that are important to the fish, and not just us. So that is why
color has become more important in descriptions and taxonomy.
mjpauers: Sabrina - Exactomundo!
Glaive: science is supposed to adapt based on what we
learn so it makes sense that scientific process should adapt as well
mjpauers: ZK - IF we found two color
"morphs" of a Labeotropheus at the same location, and they weren't
interbreeding, that would put to bed this narrow-minded thinking about the
Labeotropheus once and for all!
SabrinaD: Do different color morphs have
different general personalities?
SabrinaD: I know it happens in C. afra
mjpauers: ZK - this is why many folks refuse to
think that Labeotropheus populations could be different species.
mjpauers: Sabrina - brief answer, yes. More
mjpauers: ZK - re: fish coloration: I am
working on a manuscript that addresses this very question as we speak, albeit
in an indirect way.
ZK1975: k cuz I know we as hobbyists
pick fish to keep by specific locations cuz one looks better than the other..
but what IF there were two types of one species from one location.. oooooo
that'd change it up a little on fish selection for us who aren't down to the
specifics I guess
mjpauers: To some extents, you are right; if
the fish can't see it, why be that color (i.e., red)?
ZK1975: Makes sense
Glaive: have you identified different environmental
factors that affect color between different locations which could have lead to
the differences in the eyes of each proposed species?
mjpauers: But, think of it in terms of a color
blind human: they can still see red (or green), but they don't register it as
"red" ... and now we're getting metaphysical...
mjpauers: Glaive - I think that very thing is
happening. I want to get over to Malawi to collect that data!
Pam Chin: Letís go!
SabrinaD: so some locations may show a preponderance
of yellow and another blue or white (or some other color)
mjpauers: Sabrina: Some populations, as marked
by different male colors, do behave differently from each other.
why_spyder: Environmental factors would be like depth,
water clarity, season of the year?
Glaive: lead the way Pam ;)
mjpauers: Pam: If you're buying...:d
PhishNFilly: take along us 10 just because!
Glaive: I would imagine sediment being lifted by
currents, possibly even micro organisms?
SabrinaD: so that brings the question if personality
is one of the distinguishing factors
ZK1975: difference in eyes, but would
diet at some point affect coloration? more of one nutrient that brings out
yellows in an area than another?
mjpauers: There is one population - Chidunga -
where the males have very active courtship.
SabrinaD: between species
mjpauers: You have all hit on some likely
culprits for environmental variation that could lead to differences in vision
and, thus, coloration.
mjpauers: There was a really neat paper
published in...June or July...that looked at this, but only in one location.
They found that habitat - measured as depth, basically - had no effect on
coloration. Which is interesting in and of itself, and somewhat
mjpauers: Glaive - I am not actively courting
you...or am I?;)
SabrinaD: you would think depth would be a big
factor as that changes what light gets down to them
Glaive: rofl mike
mjpauers: Sabrina - yes, you would think that -
I know I did!
mjpauers: There is an explanation for it,
mjpauers: It is called color constancy. We have
mjpauers: It is why colors generally look the
same in bright or dim light.
Glaive: so when you look to study this in the lab have
you given thought to running two tanks side beside and introducing sediment or
some other light limiting factor to study courtship behavioral changes?
mjpauers: Glaive - I have done this with
SabrinaD: do you see any changes?
mjpauers: A recent study did this with
courtship in Metriaclima species, and found that, for them, the color didn't
matter. Also very interesting, and not what I would have expected.
mjpauers: Sabrina - No, if you can believe it!
Trying to get our data published, so I can't say much more about it, but.
SabrinaD: that's okay , it's just cool to know
you are out there doing this kind of research
mjpauers: It appears that something else is
going on, probably pattern recognition as opposed to hue (or color)
SabrinaD: do male focus more on pattern and
females more on color?
mjpauers: Ummm...where was I?
ZK1975: I take it this has nothing to do
with tank lights on or off debate that the light means nothing to the fish but
only for our viewing?
mjpauers: Sabrina - That's what I think, though
I need to do much more work on that question.
Glaive: no worries Mike, I do not want a chat to
jeopardize any of your work, you have spent far too much time on it to chance
that, if anything we would merely ask you back for a follow up chat ;)
SabrinaD: yes, please come back after you've
mjpauers: ZK - yep. The light is mostly for us,
though they do need it to synchronize their circadian clocks.
ZK1975: Thought so:)
mjpauers: I hope the damn thing gets published!
Publishing can be very frustrating, sometimes...
StructureGuy: Well. I gotta go. Thanks to Why_Spyder for
setting this up and thanks to Mike for putting up with us. It's been my
favorite discussion we've ever had. And I don't particularly even like these
funny nose mbuna. Good night all.
Glaive: lol night Kevin
mjpauers: Nice to meet you, StructureGuy!
mjpauers: Color constancy!
Glaive: he has an early morning, the sissy, I'm leaving
this in the transcript
mjpauers: So, with the mbuna, they use this
mechanism to help them recognize colors, even when they aren't all that
mjpauers: Take the color red, for example.
mjpauers: Red light disappears with depth.
After ~20 ft or so, red wavelengths don't penetrate, not even in very clear
mjpauers: But, the mbuna can still detect these
wavelengths on other fish, because of color constancy, which is a type of
neural or cortical (not the fish have much of a cortex...) filtering mechanism.
mjpauers: Again, itís the reason why red looks
red or green looks green no matter what sort of lighting you have, at least as
far as bright or dim lighting is concerned.
mjpauers: So no more "Oh, I got dressed
with the lights off..." excuses when you show up at work looking like a
mjpauers: Have I gotten to all the questions? I
feel like I have neglected someone.
mikeynashy: [SabrinaD] 9:55 pm: how can you test
vision range? did u get that one
mjpauers: Or, I can keep rambling. I'm sure I
can get you all nice and sleepy...
SabrinaD: except this is fascinating stuff LOL
mjpauers: Color vision tests for fish: you can
give them tasks (called operant conditioning), you can make
electrophysiological measurements (like the ERG), or you can examine their
mjpauers: That's the quick, jargon-filled
mikeynashy: Pauers yer not boring at all talk all u
SabrinaD: do we have any of their genomes
mjpauers: The tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus)
genome has been mapped.
why_spyder: Mike, hopefully you can cover some of your
experiments on behavior once you have questions answered:)
SabrinaD: I've always wondered if we'd ever be
able to devise DNA testing for species
mjpauers: There is a cichlid genome consortium
project, headed by Dr. Tom Kocher, who has been working on this and has started
a few mbuna.
mjpauers: Oh, the behavior stuff, sure!
mjpauers: I have done a few different
Glaive: I was curious how one would do the erg tests,
literally sit a fish in a small volume of water with two electrodes and hit
them with light changes, cross referencing brain activity with changes in
mjpauers: I have done some basic mate-choice
experiments, just looking at how females react to different males.
mjpauers: The interesting parts of those were
that it appears that the male Labeotropheus were just as sensitive about the
type of female present, and displayed more often to females of their own
mjpauers: Not many would have expected that; I
SabrinaD: that is really cool
SabrinaD: that would lead to the idea of
distinct species wouldn't it?
mjpauers: Glaive - it basically works exactly
as you describe!
mjpauers: Except we anaesthetize the fish
before we strap 'em in.
mjpauers: Err... strap.
Glaive: so do you have a hypothesis you can share on
the male recognition of female populations?
ZK1975: Female coloration make any
difference to perhaps one particular male. Like, the blotched females are
preferred over spotted?:)
mjpauers: Sabrina - yes!
mjpauers: Glaive and ZK: It had been assumed
for many years that male mbuna - and males in general just don't care about
whom they mate with.
mjpauers: Am I right, ladies?:d
ZK1975: yeah but it's the ladies who say
yes or no, right?
Pam Chin: I
think you are right on!
mjpauers: ZK - yes and no!
Pam Chin: lol
ZK1975: After a few beers perhaps..
mjpauers: See, females make the big, expensive
eggs, so they have a big investment in reproduction. So they kinda have to be
choosy, just to protect the investment.
SabrinaD: can a female pursue a male so much
he agrees to breed? I had a peacock female that bred with an acei male but only
after they'd been together for quite a long time (and he'd already been
breeding his own females)
mjpauers: But males also suffer, from an
evolutionary standpoint, if they make the wrong choice.
mikeynashy: humans have the same idea
mjpauers: Sabrina - it was probably the male
that noticed the big, ripe female, and she didn't want to waste the eggs. So,
she "made the best of a bad situation," as ecologists might say of
that type of hybridization.
SabrinaD: and he was already in breeding mode
at the time
mjpauers: So, many assumed that males would
just mate with whomever whenever. But my data showed that, while males courted all
females, they courted more often to their "own" females.
mjpauers: Which was kind of a novel finding,
for mbuna. I think someone in George Turner's group had showed this in
mjpauers: But I also did another kind of mate
choice experiment, which is why I am "famous" in cichlid research
why_spyder: Was there any difference in courtship
behavior between males with standard females and males with OB females?
mjpauers: I measured the wavelengths of light
reflected off of the males, and did some calculations about their color
mjpauers: Brian - I never looked at that,
unfortunately. That would be the next place to go with this project.
Glaive: what did you find Mike?
mjpauers: What I found was that females preferred
males with the most saturated colors.
SabrinaD: that makes a lot of sense actually
mjpauers: And, because the colors were more
saturated (this is a property called chroma), there was more contrast among the
color pattern elements. So, the females like males with wildly-contrasting
why_spyder: Is it that high-contrasting colors are a
sign of better health and vigor?
mjpauers: What this demonstrated was that not
only do females recognize their males based on color patterns, but that they
make a judgment about mate quality based on color information, even when the
males might have the same overall pattern and colors.
mjpauers: Brian - yep. That has been shown in
stickleback, and maybe in some cichlids too. Victorians, I think...
mjpauers: I have also done some experiments
with male-male aggression.
Glaive: very interesting, it correlates with the idea
of an alpha male in the tank, typically the most colored up abusive brute who
thus gets to mate...
mjpauers: What we found was that males
recognize opponents based on color pattern, and are more aggressive to
similarly-colored opponents, not matter what the species.
mjpauers: Glaive - yep!
Pam Chin: ?
mjpauers: So, a red top male was always more
aggressive to a red top male, even if it was a different species.
mjpauers: Given a choice between a red top male
and a differently-colored male, that is.
Glaive: Just toss out the Question Pam, Mike here might
be a rookie to chat but he catches on quick
mjpauers: Yeah, I'm not so good with internet shorthand...
Pam Chin: Did
you do any study on flee distances?
mjpauers: Pam - no.
mjpauers: I'm not sure that anyone has with
why_spyder: I wonder what it would take to setup such a
study (another chat possibly?:D)
mjpauers: I think this has been looked at in
Central American cichlids, but I can't think of an instance of this in Lake
Pam Chin: I
just think it is an interesting aspect. In Central America flee lengths are
really long, while in Malawi there are some that are very short, a couple feet,
especially in the species that spawn in bowers.
Glaive: Might be a good question to pose to Larry
mjpauers: Actually, it wouldn't be that
Glaive: value of prized territory increases
exponentially with the distance from said territory
mjpauers: You could use smaller tanks to
position your stimulus fish a varying distances from the territory of your
focal fish, and look at responses to each.
Pam Chin: I
always look at that when I observe fish in the wild and sometimes follow the
chaser and sometimes follow the chasee
mjpauers: Or...well...an idea is slowly
forming. I don't think that experiment would quite do it. But something
mjpauers: Pam - what do you see when you do
Glaive: what about having a long skinny tank or just a Wal-Mart
mjpauers: Pam - I missed your above post.
mjpauers: Never mind!
mjpauers: Yeah, different tank lengths/shapes
could be a way to get at this.
Pam Chin: Itís
just interesting, I am also interested in Tropheus and flee distances are in
important in that species
mjpauers: It is very interesting, indeed!
mjpauers: As you point out, with mbuna, the
flee distances, or distances among competitors, are pretty small.
mjpauers: So that makes for an easy study in
mjpauers: Any other questions I forgot?
why_spyder: Mike -
with your behavior studies, did you have to do videos/photos of your
mjpauers: Yes, videos.
mjpauers: It is tough to directly observe
cichlids in captivity. If they see you, they beg for food!
mjpauers: So I film them and leave the room,
and watch the tapes later.
mikeynashy: any u can share?
SabrinaD: I do have mine where they are used
to me sitting near the tank (it's in the living room by the couch LOL) and I
can watch them as long as I don't move toward the tank LOL
why_spyder: how long did the videos have to run to get
the information you needed?
mjpauers: For mate choice, 30 - 45 minutes. For
aggression, 10 minutes. Females can be kinda coy...
SabrinaD: you can say that again LOL
Glaive: they are not coy, they are from Venus ;)
mjpauers: mikeynashy - I'd love to, but I have
to transfer them from 8mm VHS to digital. I am about 15 years behind the times,
AmayaOkami: lol they r just smart
mjpauers: In the mate choice setup I use, the
males are revealed suddenly to the females. So, they need a longer adjustment
period to the stimulus.
why_spyder: Mike - are you able to share the videos
before your work is published, or would sharing ahead of publishing null your
Pam Chin: You could request a camera in grant
from the ACA! I think the stuff you are working on is great!
mjpauers: I could share an example or two, once
I do an analog to digital transfer.
mjpauers: Thanks, Pam! I may very well do that!
Except Wayne is a personal friend, and I'd hate to put him in that kind of
Pam Chin: I don't know, sounds like a worthy
cause to me!
ZK1975: Alright it's time for me to bow
out. Thanks for the interesting and professional chat, Mike.
Pam Chin: worthy
mjpauers: Thank you, ZK!
mjpauers: It is slowly creeping up on my
bedtime, too. Any last, quick questions?
SabrinaD: Mike thank so much for joining us, I
had a great time and learned a lot. Take care and good luck with your research.
mjpauers: If not, thank you all for inviting
me, and for your attention!
Pam Chin: clap clap clap clap Thanks Mike!
Glaive: no last questions comes to mind at the moment
PhishNFilly: It's been absolutely amazing, thanks very
much Mike for your time and willingness to share with us. Great information.
Big Thumbs Up!
why_spyder: Thanks for sharing Mike - loved it!
mjpauers: Feel free to e-mail me with any other
AmayaOkami: great job
Glaive: I think it is more important to thank you for such
a stimulating chat.
mikeynashy: ty mike for joining us yer awesome
mjpauers: Thank you guys! I really appreciate
Glaive: Your work and knowledge was quite eye opening
(pun not intended)
why_spyder: When you get more information and when you
get published (I think you will!) we will have to have you back again!
mjpauers: I would love to come back.
mjpauers: Umm..how the hell do I sign out?
PhishNFilly: lol just x out the room
mikeynashy: lol just close out
AmayaOkami: close the window
mjpauers: OK - thanks!
Glaive: wow too slow alex
mikeynashy: I tryed
PhishNFilly: I am just dumb struck.
mikeynashy: I was like .3 secs off
PhishNFilly: what a wonderful chat.
Let me just take this moment to say this chat was a
pleasure. Mike led a really great chat and I hope that people see this and
maybe engage Mike in doing more presentations. This was extremely informative
and Mike was patient. Thank you Mike from everyone at CF. If you would like to
contact Mike his email address is firstname.lastname@example.org