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Ecology and Evolution


Department of Biological Sciences


Sexual dimorphism evolves when selection favors different phenotypic optima between the sexes. Such sexually antagonistic selection creates intralocus sexual conflict when traits are genetically correlated between the sexes and have sex‐specific optima. Brown anoles are highly sexually dimorphic: Males are on average 30% longer than females and 150% heavier in our study population. Viability selection on body size is known to be sexually antagonistic, and directional selection favors large male size whereas stabilizing selection constrains females to remain small. We build on previous studies of viability selection by measuring sexually antagonistic selection using reproductive components of fitness over three generations in a natural population of brown anoles. We estimated the number of offspring produced by an individual that survived to sexual maturity (termed RSV), a measure of individual fitness that includes aspects of both individual reproductive success and offspring survival. We found directional selection on male body size, consistent with previous studies of viability selection. However, selection on female body size varied among years, and included periods of positive directional selection, quadratic stabilizing selection, and no selection. Selection acts differently in the sexes based on both survival and reproduction and sexual conflict appears to be a persistent force in this species.