The University of Western Australia

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Clelia Gasparini

Dr Clelia Gasparini

Research Fellow
Animal Biology, School of

Contact details
School of Animal Biology
The University of Western Australia (M092)
35 Stirling Highway
+61 8 6488 2239
+61 8 6488 1029
2009 PhD Evolutionary Biology, University of Padova (Italy)
Key research
Evolutionary Biology
Sexual selection
Sperm competition
Animal Behaviour
My research interests lie in the general field of sexual selection, with particular focus on postcopulatory sexual selection. I mainly use fish as a model species to study sperm competition dynamics, cryptic female choice and the evolutionary consequences of sexual conflict. My current research (funded by ARC - DECRA) focuses on the interplay between ejaculate traits and the female environment within an evolutionary framework.
For the most updated list see


Cattelan S, Evans JP, Pilastro A & Gasparini C (2015) The effect of sperm production and mate availability on patterns of alternative mating tactics in the guppy Poecilia reticulata. Animal Behaviour 112: 105-110

Gasparini C, Congiu L & Pilastro A (2015) MHC similarity and sexual selection: different doesn't always mean attractive. Molecular Ecology 24(16):4286-95

Firman RC, Young FJ , Rowe DC , Duong HT & Gasparini C (2015). Sexual rest and post-meiotic sperm ageing in house mice. Journal of Evolutionary Biology 28: 1373-1382

Rahman MM, Gasparini C, Turchini GM, & Evans JP (2015). Testing the interactive effects of carotenoids and polyunsaturated fatty acids on ejaculate traits in the guppy Poecilia reticulata (Pisces: Poeciliidae). Journal of fish biology 86(5), 1638-1643.

Evans JP, Rahman MM & Gasparini C (2015). Genotype-by-environment interactions underlie the expression of pre- and postcopulatory sexually selected traits in guppies. Journal of Evolutionary Biology 28 (4): 959

Gasparini C, Kelley J & Evans JP (2014). Male sperm storage compromises sperm motility in guppies. Biology letters 10 (11), 20140681

Rahman MM, C Gasparini, GM Turchini & Evans JP (2014). Experimental reduction in dietary omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids depresses sperm competitiveness. Biology letters 10 (9), 20140623

Rahman MM, Turchini GM, Gasparini C, Norambuena F & Evans JP (2014). The expression of pre-and postcopulatory sexually selected traits reflects levels of dietary stress in guppies. PloS one 9 (8), e105856

Fitzpatrick LJ, Gasparini C, Fitzpatrick JL & JP Evans (2014). Male–female relatedness and patterns of male reproductive investment in guppies. Biology Letters 10 (5), 20140166.

Barrett LT, JP Evans, C Gasparini (2014). The Effects of Perceived Mating Opportunities on Patterns of Reproductive Investment by Male Guppies. PloS one 9 (4), e93780.

Gasparini C, Dosselli R, Devigili A & A Pilastro (2013) Pattern of inbreeding depression, condition dependence and additive genetic variance in Trinidadian guppy ejaculate. Ecology and Evolution 3 (15), 4940-4953.

Evans JP, Rosengrave P, Gasparini C & Gemell N (2013). Delineating the roles of males and females in sperm competition. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 280: 20132047.

Gasparini C & Evans JP (2013). Ovarian fluid mediates the temporal decline in sperm viability in a fish with sperm storage. PLoS ONE 8(5): e64431.

Evans JP, van Lieshout E & Gasparini C (2013). Quantitative genetic insights into the coevolutionary dynamics of male and female genitalia. Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 280, 20130749.

Gasparini C, Serena G, Pilastro A. (2013) Do unattractive friends make you look better? Context-dependent male mating preferences in the guppy. Proc R Soc B, 280 (1756).

Evans JP, Gasparini C. (2013) The genetic basis of female multiple mating in a polyandrous livebearing fish. Ecology and Evolution 3 (1): 61-66.

Gasparini C, Andreatta G, Pilastro A. (2012) Ovarian fluid of receptive females enhances sperm velocity. Naturwissenschaften 99(5), 417-420.

Gasparini C, Devigili A, Pilastro A. (2012) Cross-generational effects of sexual harassment on female fitness in the guppy. Evolution 66(2), 532-543.

Gasparini C, Pilastro A, Evans JP. (2011) Male genital morphology and its influence on female mating preferences and paternity success in guppies. PLoS One 6(7).

Gasparini C, Pilastro A. (2011) Cryptic female preference for genetically unrelated males is mediated by ovarian fluid in the guppy. Proc R Soc B 278(1717), 2495-2501.

Evans JP, Gasparini C, Holwell GI, Ramnarine IW, Pitcher TE, Pilastro A. (2011) Intraspecific evidence from guppies for correlated patterns of male and female genital trait diversification. Proc R Soc B 278(1718), 2611-2620.

Boschetto C, Gasparini C, Pilastro A. (2011) Sperm number and velocity affect sperm competition success in the guppy (Poecilia reticulata). Behav Ecol Sociobiol 65(4), 813-821.

Gasparini C, Simmons LW, Beveridge M, Evans J.P. (2010) Sperm swimming velocity predicts competitive fertilization success in the green swordtail Xiphophorus helleri. PLoS One 5(8), e12146.

Gasparini C, Marino IAM, Boschetto C, Pilastro A. (2010) Effect of male age on sperm traits and sperm competition success in the guppy (Poecilia reticulata). J Evol Biol 23(1), 124-135.

Gasparini C, Peretti AV, Pilastro A. (2009) Female presence influences sperm velocity in the guppy. Biol Lett 5(6), 792-794.

Pilastro A, Gasparini C, Boschetto C, Evans J.P. (2008) Colorful male guppies do not provide females with fecundity benefits. Behav Ecol 19(2), 374-381.

Pilastro A, Mandelli M, Gasparini C, Dadda M, Bisazza A. (2007) Copulation duration, insemination efficiency and male attractiveness in guppies. Anim Behav 74, 321-328.

Evans JP, Gasparini C, Pilastro A. (2007) Female guppies shorten brood retention in response to predator cues. Behav Ecol Sociobiol 61(5), 719-727.
Funding received
2016 UWA Research Collaboration Award ($18,190)

2015 ARC DECRA Fellowship ($385,536)

2013 UWA ECR Fellowship Support Program ($29,245)

2012 Marie Curie outgoing fellowship (EUR 267,500)

2011 UWA Research Collaboration Award ($6,000)
Previous positions
2012-2015 Marie Curie postdoctoral fellow (International outgoing scheme), University of Padova - University of Western Australia

2009-11 Postdoctoral Researcher, University of Padova, Italy

Supervision of PhD and Honours students
Behavioural Ecology (Anim3365) - Guest lecturer
Current projects
- The evolutionary significance of ejaculate-female interactions (with focus on the female reproductive fluid)

- Sperm ageing and its evolutionary consequences

- Inbreeding and sexual selection
Research profile
Research profile and publications

The University of Western Australia

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Last updated:
Tuesday, 3 November, 2015 2:39 PM