Navigation Links
Females choose sexier friends to avoid harassment
Date:12/6/2011

Scientists have observed a strategy for females to avoid unwanted male attention: choosing more attractive friends. Published today (7 December) in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B, the study is the first to show females spending time with those more sexually attractive than themselves to reduce harassment from males.

Carried out by the Universities of Exeter and Copenhagen, the study focuses on the Trinidadian guppy, a species of small freshwater fish. It shows that the females choose companions that are relatively more attractive than themselves and in this way reduce harassment from males. The research shows that the tactic is successful and by ensuring they are less attractive than other group members, the fish experience less harassment and fewer mating attempts from males.

Male guppies are well known for frequent and sometimes constant harassment of females. This puts a significant burden on females, sometimes preventing them finding food and escaping from predators.

Females are 'receptive' for a few days in each month. During this time they emit a sexual pheromone that attracts males and allow males to glide into a position that facilitates mating.

The researchers used guppies descended from those living in the Aripo River in Trinidad. They identified which females were currently receptive to male sexual attention and which were not. They then monitored the amount of time both receptive and non-receptive females chose to spend with either receptive or non-receptive females.

They found that non-receptive females spent significantly more time with receptive, and therefore more sexually attractive, females and that, by doing so, they received far less attention from males. In fact, they even chose water in which receptive females had recently swum over water that had housed other non-receptive fish. This shows they picked up on chemical cues emitted by receptive females and found this to create a more appealing social environment.

Lead researcher Dr Safi Darden of the University of Exeter said: "It is now becoming apparent that males of some species choose to associate with relatively less attractive males to increase their chances of mating. We wanted to see if females also chose their same-sex companions based on attractiveness, but in this case, to reduce unwanted attention."

"Our results support the idea that social structure can develop around relative attractiveness and mating strategies. Although we focused our study on one species of fish, I would expect that this strategy would be seen in other species where females face similar levels of unwanted sexual attention from males."


'/>"/>
Contact: Sarah Hoyle
s.hoyle@exeter.ac.uk
44-013-927-22062
University of Exeter
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Pitt team finds molecular evidence of brain changes in depressed females
2. Headaches are common in year following traumatic brain injury, especially among females
3. Females can place limits on evolution of attractive features in males, research shows
4. Avian Axe effect attracts attention of females and males
5. Competition between females leads to infanticide in some primates
6. In fireflies, flightless females lose out on gifts from males
7. Differences in brain development between males and females may hold clues to mental health disorders
8. Male antelopes trick females into extra sex opportunities
9. Male antelopes deceive females to increase their chances of mating
10. Females shut down male-male sperm competition in leafcutter ants
11. Pesticide atrazine can turn male frogs into females
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/3/2016)... June 3, 2016 ... Nepal hat ein ... hochsicherer geprägter Kennzeichen, einschließlich Personalisierung, Registrierung und ... der Produktion und Implementierung von Identitätsmanagementlösungen. Zahlreiche ... im Januar teilgenommen, aber Decatur wurde als ...
(Date:5/24/2016)... , May 24, 2016 Ampronix facilitates superior patient care by providing unparalleled ... medical LCD display is the latest premium product recently added to the range of ... ... ... Sony 3d Imaging- LCD Medical Display- Ampronix News ...
(Date:5/3/2016)... , May 3, 2016  Neurotechnology, a provider ... MegaMatcher Automated Biometric Identification System (ABIS) , ... multi-biometric projects. MegaMatcher ABIS can process multiple complex ... any combination of fingerprint, face or iris biometrics. ... SDK and MegaMatcher Accelerator , which ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/23/2016)... Mass. , June 23, 2016   ... development of novel compounds designed to target cancer ... napabucasin, has been granted Orphan Drug Designation from ... the treatment of gastric cancer, including gastroesophageal junction ... stemness inhibitor designed to inhibit cancer stemness pathways ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016  The Prostate Cancer Foundation (PCF) ... precise treatments and faster cures for prostate cancer. Members of the Class of ... 15 countries. Read More About the Class of 2016 ... ... ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... June 23, 2016 , ... In a new case report published today ... a patient who developed lymphedema after being treated for breast cancer benefitted from an ... paradigm for dealing with this debilitating, frequent side effect of cancer treatment. ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... ... 23, 2016 , ... ClinCapture, the only free validated electronic ... showcase its product’s latest features from June 26 to June 30, 2016 for ... Disrupting Clinical Trials in The Cloud during the conference. DIA (Drug Information ...
Breaking Biology Technology: