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  • Built-in-billboards: Male bluefin killifish signal different things with different fins

    The pigment melanin contributes to the black edges (b) on the anal fin that are a sign of dominance, while pterins account for the red and yellow colors (a) on the anal fin, and signal health. Carotenoids on the caudal fin (c) indicate that the fish is eating well. Brighter, more-intense colors are associated with better mating success.

    The pigment melanin contributes to the black edges (b) on the anal fin that are a sign of dominance, while pterins account for the red and yellow colors (a) on the anal fin, and signal health. Carotenoids on the caudal fin (c) indicate that the fish is eating well. Brighter, more-intense colors are associated with better mating success.

    Photo by L. Brian Stauffer; graphic by Julie McMahon

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  • To reach Rebecca Fuller, call 217-328-2026; email rcfuller@illinois.edu

    The paper, “The meaning of melanin, carotenoid, and pterin pigments in the bluefin killifish, Lucania goodei” is available online or from the U. of I. News Bureau.