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- PublicationAccès libreCleaner wrasse prefer client mucus : support for partner control mechanisms in cleaning interactions(2003-11-07)
;Grutter, Alexandra S.Recent studies on cleaning behaviour suggest that there are conflicts between cleaners and their clients over what cleaners eat. The diet of cleaners usually contains ectoparasites and some client tissue. It is unclear, however, whether cleaners prefer client tissue over ectoparasites or whether they include client tissue in their diet only when searching for parasites alone is not profitable. To distinguish between these two hypotheses, we trained cleaner fish Labroides dimidiatus to feed from plates and offered them client mucus from the parrotfish Chlorurus sordidus, parasitic monogenean flatworms, parasitic gnathiid isopods and boiled flour glue as a control. We found that cleaners ate more mucus and monogeneans than gnathiids, with gnathiids eaten slightly more often than the control substance. Because gnathiids are the most abundant ectoparasites, our results suggest a potential for conflict between cleaners and clients over what the cleaner should eat, and support studies emphasizing the importance of partner control in keeping cleaning interactions mutualistic.
- PublicationAccès libreExperimental evidence that partner choice is a driving force in the payoff distribution among cooperators or mutualists : the cleaner fish case(2001)
;Grutter, Alexandra S.Supply and demand largely determine the price of goods on human markets. It has been proposed that in animals, similar forces influence the payoff distribution between trading partners in sexual selection, intraspecific cooperation and interspecific mutualism. Here we present the first experimental evidence supporting biological market theory in a study on cleaner fish, Labroides dimidiatus. Cleaners interact with two classes of clients: choosy client species with access to several cleaners usually do not queue for service and do not return if ignored, while resident client species with access to only one cleaning station do queue or return. We used plexiglas plates with equal amounts of food to simulate these behaviours of the two client classes. Cleaners soon inspected 'choosy' plates before 'resident' plates. This supports previous field observations that suggest that client species with access to several cleaners exert choice to receive better (immediate) service.