Photo of Sue Bertram

Sue Bertram


Degrees:B.Sc., M.Sc. (Trent), Ph.D. (Arizona State)
Phone:613-520-2600 x 1585
Office:Office: 4631 CTTC Building
Lab: 4440G CTTC Building
Website:Visit my lab website


Dr. Bertram’s research utilizes a myriad of laboratory and field-based techniques to investigate the major inconsistency between theory and data in explaining the maintenance of variation in sexually selected traits. Theoretically, all fitness-conferring traits should display minimal amounts of genetic variation. This theory is based on the notion that fitness is influenced by directional selection and therefore a single best phenotype should predominate. Provided this theory is accurate, sexually selected traits should strongly influence fitness and therefore display minimal amounts of heritable variation. However, sexually selected traits exhibit even higher levels of heritable variation than other fitness-conferring traits in similar taxa. Her research addresses the causal question of how variation is maintained in sexually selected traits, and focuses on the field cricket as the model organism. Further details about her research can be found at the Bertram Lab Web Site.

Selected Publications

Morehouse NI, Raubenheimer D, Kay A, Bertram SM. 2020. Integrating nutritional and behavioral ecology: mutual benefits and new frontiers. Volume 52 of Advances in the Study of Behavior (, Zuk M and Naguib M (handling editors). Submitted November 2019, Accepted January 27 2020

Xie J, Bertram SM. 2019 Using machine learning techniques to classify cricket sound. 2019. Proc. SPIE 11384, Eleventh International Conference on Signal Processing Systems, 113840K

Wojan, E.M., Carreiro, N.C., Clendenen, D.A., Neldner, H., Castillo, C., Bertram, S.M., Kolluru, G.R. 2019. The effects of commonly used anaesthetics on colour measurements across body regions in the poeciliid fish, Girardinus metallicus. Journal of Fish Biology Published September 13, 2019

Doria, M.D., Morand-Ferron, J., Bertram, S.M. 2019. Spatial cognitive performance is linked to thigmotaxis in field crickets. Animal Behaviour 150:15-25.

Villarreal, A.E., Godin, J-G.J., Bertram, S.M. 2018. Influence of the operational sex ratio on mutual mate choice in the Jamaican field cricket (Gryllus assimilis). Ethology 124:816-828.

Wojan, E., Bertram, S.M., Clendenen, D., Castillo, C., Neldner, H., Kolluru, G.R. 2018. Sexual selection on the multicomponent display of black morph male Girardinus metallicus (Pisces: Poeciliidae). Behavioural Processes 153:1-8 (

Reifer, M.L., Harrison, S.J., Bertram, S.M. 2018. How dietary protein and carbohydrate influence field cricket development, size, and mate attraction signalling. Animal Behaviour 139:137-146.

Harrison, S.J., J.-G., J. Godin, S.M. Bertram. 2017. Influence of dietary nutrient ratio on aggression and signalling in male field crickets. Animal Behaviour 134:123-134

Bertram, S.M., M.J. Loranger, I.R. Thomson, S.J. Harrison, G.L. Ferguson, M.L. Reifer, D.H. Corlett, and P.A. Gowaty. 2017. Choosy males in Jamaican field crickets. Animal Behaviour 133:101-108.

Bertram, S.M., M.J. Loranger, I.R. Thomson, S.J. Harrison, G.L. Ferguson, M.L. Reifer, D.H. Corlett, and P.A. Gowaty. 2017. What is driving male mate preference evolution in Jamaican field crickets. Ethology 123(11):793-799