Pierick Mouginot


Zoologisches Institut und Museum
Allgemeine und Systematische Zoologie

Loitzer Str. 26
Gebäude 3.3, Raum 0.48
17489 Greifswald


Up to now, I have mainly been working on animal reproductive behaviours involving several focuses ranging from mate choice, sperm allocation strategy, male competitive behaviour to sexual conflict. As a red thread, I am interested in the evolution of sexual and social interactions, the consequences at the population level and the feedback to the individual behaviour. And I like to combine empirical and theoretical approaches for this purpose.

In my PhD thesis, I investigate the evolution of a novel male reproductive strategy involved in postcopulatory competition in web building spiders. We showed that in the spider species Larinia jeskovi, males incur some damage to the female during copulation by mutilating an external structure of the female genitalia. Once this genital structure is missing, genital coupling is impossible which hinders female copulation with any subsequent rival males. By doing so, males secure their paternity and are able to remate with other females. In order to investigate the causes and consequences of external female genital mutilation, I mix fieldwork in the Biebrza National Park (Poland), lab work (behavioural, morphological, physiological and genetic analyses) and theoretical modelling in collaboration with Dr. Lutz Fromhage (University of Jyväskylä).

Mouginot, P.; Uhl, G.; & Fromhage, L. 2017: Evolution of external female genital mutilation: why do males harm their mates?. Royal Society open science, 4(11), 171195. Link
Marie‐Orleach, L.; Vogt‐Burri, N.; Mouginot, P.; Schlatter, A.; Vizoso, D. B.; Bailey, N. W.; & Schärer, L. 2017: Indirect genetic effects and sexual conflicts: Partner genotype influences multiple morphological and behavioral reproductive traits in a flatworm. Evolution, 71(5), 1232-1245. Link
Mouginot, P.; Prügel, J.; Thom, U.; Steinhoff, P. O.; Kupryjanowicz, J.; & Uhl, G. 2015: Securing paternity by mutilating female genitalia in spiders. Current Biology, 25(22), 2980-2984. Link
Curriculum Vitae
2017 Project researcher contract with Dr. Lutz Fromhage, Department of Biological and Environmental Science, University of Jyväskylä, Finland. Theoretical modelling of female genital mutilation, a male reproductive strategy to secure paternity.
2017 Project researcher contract with Pr. Gabriele Uhl, Zoological Institute and Museum, University of Greifswald, Germany. Carried out in collaboration with Pr. Dries Bonte, TEREC, University of Ghent, Belgium. Heritability in stressful environment in the spider mite Tetranychus urticae.
since 2013 PhD Student, Zoological Institute and Museum, University of Greifswald, Germany. “Female genital mutilation as a novel mating strategy in spiders: conflict or cooperation?”
2011 M.Sc., Organism and Population Biology: Behavioural ecology and conservation, University of Burgundy, France.
2009 B.Sc., life sciences: Organism and Ecosystem Biology, University of Nancy, France.
2016 DAAD scholarship STIBET, support to foreign students
Professional Affiliations
Deutsche Zoologische Gesellschaft (German Zoological Society; DZG)
European Society for Evolutionary Biology (ESEB)
Ausgewählte Medienberichte
National geographic: This Spider Destroys Female Genitalia to Prevent Future Mating. November 5, 2015.
National geographic: There’s Another Spider That Destroys Female Genitalia. March 18, 2016.
National geographic: Bondage, Cannibalism, and Castration — Spiders’ Wild Sex Lives. February 14, 2017.
Le Monde (Supplément Sciences et Médecines): L’araignée mâle, un très mauvais coup. November 18, 2015.
Die Welt: Spinnenmännchen verstümmeln weibliche Genitalien nach Sex. November 6, 2015.
Tech Times: This male spider mutilates female genitalia to stop future mating. November 9, 2015.
International Business Times: Spiders that mutilate female genitalia after mating found. November 7, 2015.
Erfahrungen in der Lehre
Reproductive biology module (Master): Student research projects (practical course).
Statistics (Research group): GLM with R (practical course).
Bisherige Projekte
2012 Sexually antagonistic coevolution on a post-copulatory behaviour in a simultaneous hermaphrodite flatworm. Dr. L. Schärer & L. Marie-Orleach, Zoological Institute, University of Basel, Switzerland.
2011 Modelling of a selfish behaviour in intrasexual competition (tragedy of the common). Dr. F.-X. Dechaume-Moncharmont & Dr. M. Galipaud, Biogéosciences lab, University of Burgundy, France.
2011 Plasticity of the hatching date as a response to avoid a specific risk of the egg stage (Salmonid). Pr. C. Wedekind & Dr. M. Pompini, DEE, University of Lausanne, Switzerland.
2010 Sperm allocation in a competitive environment in Gammarus pulex. Dr. M. Galipaud, Biogéosciences lab, University of Burgundy, France.
2010 Transitivity and self-directional preference of female mate choice in a socially monogamous cichlid fish. Dr. F.-X. Dechaume-Moncharmont, Biogéosciences lab, University of Burgundy, France.
2009 Social learning in Corvus frugilegus. Pr. R. Noe, DEPE, University of Strasbourg, France.
2009 Long term effect of postnatal stress on the anxiety and activity behaviours in rat. Pr. M. Trabalon, Dr. C. Gilbert & Dr. S. Giroud, University of Nancy, France.