Navigation Links
Female pronghorns choose mate based on substance as well as show

When a female animal compares males to choose a mate, she can't order a laboratory genetic screen for each suitor. Instead, she has to rely on external cues that may indicate genetic quality. Until now, biologists have focused on elaborate ornaments, such as the peacock's tail, as cues that females might use.

The thorny problem has been to explain how the correlation between male genetic quality and ornament quality can be maintained. If an ornament gives a male a mating advantage, then evolution would rapidly move to the point where all males, regardless of genetic quality, have high-quality ornaments.

"Female mate choice is likely a very important evolutionary force that does much more than select for ornaments in a few species," said John Byers of the University of Idaho. "It may be universally important in maintaining population genetic quality."

In work supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF), Byers has shown that certain females can choose good genes in a species that does not have ornaments, such as the American pronghorn, an antelope-like mammal that evolved in North America. Byers has been studying pronghorn at the National Bison Range, a 30-square-mile National Wildlife Refuge in northwestern Montana, for 20 years, and recognizes all individual pronghorn in the population.

In recent research, Byers and his coauthor Lisette Waits, also of the University of Idaho, obtained genetic markers for all pronghorn individuals in the population and assigned paternity to the offspring.

"The females' mate sampling creates a small group of males that each year sire more than one-half of all young," said Byers, who is currently serving as a program officer in NSF's biological sciences directorate. "These are the males that, under the stringent female sampling process, have shown they are the most vigorous."

The offspring of these vigorous males also are more likely to survive to weaning, Byers found. "This ad vantage is due to faster growth rates," he said.

Byers also showed that these faster-growing fawns suckle less from their mothers than do the offspring sired by less-attractive males. He monitored the population for several years, and found the offspring of frequently chosen males continued to have a survival advantage for as long as five years.


'"/>

Source:National Science Foundation


Related biology news :

1. Female sex hormones play a vital role in defense against sexually transmitted diseases
2. Female volunteers prepare for a second bedrest
3. Female butterflies go for sparkle -- not size -- when choosing to mate
4. Female guppies risk their lives to avoid too much male attention
5. Female birds boost up their eggs when hearing sexy song
6. Update on census of worlds most endangered cat -- Female Amur leopard found dead
7. Female Antarctic seals give cold shoulder to local males
8. Female chimps keep the bullies at bay
9. Female-led infanticide in wild chimpanzees
10. When mice choose mates, experience counts
11. T for two: Scientists show how immune system chooses best way to fight infection
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:


(Date:3/23/2017)... Mar. 23, 2017 Research and Markets has ... Analysis & Trends - Industry Forecast to 2025" report to ... ... a CAGR of around 8.8% over the next decade to reach ... analyzes the market estimates and forecasts for all the given segments ...
(Date:3/20/2017)... , March 20, 2017 At this year,s ... -based biometrics manufacturer DERMALOG. The Chancellor came to the DERMALOG stand ... is this year,s CeBIT partner country. At the largest German biometrics ... in use: fingerprint, face and iris recognition as well as DERMALOG´s multi-biometrics ... ...
(Date:3/9/2017)... , Australia , March 9, ... study data at the prestigious World Lung Imaging Workshop ... Andreas Fouras , was invited to deliver the ... pulmonary medicine. This globally recognised event brings together leaders ... share the latest developments in lung imaging. ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:4/25/2017)... , April 25, 2017 ... ("EpiVax") has licensed its novel immune-modulating technology to an ... disease and allergy. Tregitopes, pronounced T·rej·itopes, ... human immunoglobulin by EpiVax CEO Annie De ... to intravenous immunoglobulin G, an autoimmune disease therapy, ...
(Date:4/25/2017)... ... April 25, 2017 , ... ... Partners.     , Covalent’s Analytical Services unit provides high-quality data to clients, ... within 24 hours of receipt. There are no price premiums, and customers are ...
(Date:4/24/2017)... ... April 24, 2017 , ... It ... a cellular milieu; however, the broad application of this cellular target engagement concept ... sensitive quantitative readouts. Cell-based thermal stabilization assays are valuable methods for particular applications, ...
(Date:4/21/2017)... ... April 21, 2017 , ... ... manufactures in 10 categories with over 30 nominees and well as the first-year ... the new award and the event was hosted by CompanyWeek and Manufacturers Edge, ...
Breaking Biology Technology: