Why do only females select males?

Discussion in 'Biology & Genetics' started by aaqucnaona, Dec 18, 2011.

  1. aaqucnaona This sentence is a lie Valued Senior Member

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    Why are only the males subject to sexual selection. If males fight to claim a mate, thus ensuring that the better male mates; shouldnt females also fight to ate with this male so that the best pairing is made? Why doesnt this happen? If it does I would love an example. But why is such two way sexual selection not prevalent? Shouldnt a better pair have better offsprings and thus increase the survivablity of such dual selection?
     
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  3. billvon Valued Senior Member

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    They're not, even in humans. Both sexes participate in the selection process. (True in most of the apes.)

    Ah, you mean aggression. That depends on the species. In bonobos, females use aggression to interrupt matings in progress to try to improve their own odds of mating successfully. In many insect species not only is the female the aggressor, she often kills and eats the male after they mate.

    Again depends on the species. In most ape species both sexes participate in the selection process but the male is generally the aggressor, and often competes for the available females. This helps improve survival in some mammalian species since the female becomes less able to defend herself during pregnancy and nursing, and thus a stronger male that bonds with the female helps ensure survival of offspring.
     
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  5. cosmictraveler Be kind to yourself always. Valued Senior Member

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    But what about those with artistic skills, hunting abilities, wisdom and a multitude of more important things that make a person better than just being the strongest?
     
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  7. Robittybob1 Banned Banned

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    In that case the loser wins.

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  8. aaqucnaona This sentence is a lie Valued Senior Member

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    I am talking about animals and the predominant behaviour of males to fight for females but not the other way around. We are thankfully smart enough to consider the qualities u stated, but why dont females fight to mate with the winning males?
     
  9. aaqucnaona This sentence is a lie Valued Senior Member

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    How? :bugeye:
     
  10. Robittybob1 Banned Banned

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    You might not want to mate with the toughest of the woman, firstly she might attack you too. and males tend to go for attraction rather than strength.
    So the guy who looses would get to mate with the more feminine woman who lost that match between the females.
    It's a Win - Loose situation, and for the other it is Loose - Win.
     
  11. aaqucnaona This sentence is a lie Valued Senior Member

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    I mean why dont females compete? Every female is hoged by males why fight for hours [bison, wildebeasts] but females do nothing to prove they are fit for the winning males? Doesnt this increase risk for the offspring? A fitter mother = offspring more likely to live = increase in tendency of females to compete. Why doesnt this happen?
     
  12. Robittybob1 Banned Banned

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    It does, as you say, "fitter mother", the ones with the better mothering ability, their offspring do better, in the wild situation at least.

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    Just the act of giving birth is an enormous selection process in itself.
     
  13. billvon Valued Senior Member

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    ?? You've never seen female animals preen? (Or women at a bar?)
     
  14. Crunchy Cat F-in' *meow* baby!!! Valued Senior Member

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    When two or more human females find out that they are dating a common male then a fight often ensues :3.
     
  15. scheherazade Northern Horse Whisperer Valued Senior Member

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    Females (of all species) compete in a different manner than being solely reliant on direct aggression. They are often at their most competitive even when traveling in a friendly grouping.

    'Keep your friends close and your enemies closer.'

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    The female may engage in aggression less frequently but when she does, it tends to be a lot nastier.

    Then there are others that travel alone.

    You may observe that males compete for the females in most species, yet in the end, it is most often decided by the female whether she accepts the victor, or any other. :shrug:
     
  16. scheherazade Northern Horse Whisperer Valued Senior Member

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    This video is so corny that I just had to post it.

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    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jxCs6wESTdI
     
  17. scheherazade Northern Horse Whisperer Valued Senior Member

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    Or at the shooting range, with the best target of the day, lol....

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  18. KilljoyKlown Whatever Valued Senior Member

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    Frequently the winning male gets all the females in the heard and he wants to impregnate all of them.

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  19. James R Just this guy, you know? Staff Member

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    They aren't.

    No. The male investment in offspring is negligible compared with female investment, at least in cases where the male's only role is to provide the sperm and the female does all of the incubating and rearing of young.

    In short, the males don't particularly mind which females they impregnate. The more the merrier. On the other hand, the females mind very much because if they are going to devote a lot of time and effort into the young then they want the best possible genes. Since they can control who they mate with (at least to some extent), they have the ultimate choice and the males have to compete.
     
  20. tantalus Registered Senior Member

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    aaqucnaona,
    You ask why females dont compete?
    As James R has already stated, females (in most but not all species) contribute far more to the raising of the offspring.

    ex. more energy put into an egg than a sperm
    ex. females incubate or gestate etc, males mostly dont
    ex. females often contribute the most in rearing. the theory is because they have already put more into raising the young at this stage, therefore the male can adopt (via natural selection) an abandonment policy (less to lose) forcing the female to stay to do all the rearing work.

    Furthermore in a population where the sex ratio is 50-50, females that are pregnant are not in the mating game, but males alwalys are, creating an imbalance at any one time.

    In addition, males have greater capacity to breed, millions of sperm, while females have a limited number of eggs in a lifetime, and can carry only so many offspring at once. An addition potential bias.

    This all makes females rarer. therefore males are forced to compete for the rarer. Females can therefore choose the best, and its vital to choose, to ensure the best chance of passing on one's genes.

    So as you can see there are a multitude of factors to consider, and in depends on the specific species.

    However, there are examples of the complete opposite. In seashorses the males carry the eggs in the pouch (reason unknown), but whatever the reason in results in the females being ornamental (to impress the males, while this isnt physical, it is competition nonetheless) and the males choose who they partner with, Iam guessing because they make the larger contribution. There are other examples.
     
  21. KilljoyKlown Whatever Valued Senior Member

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    I do have a problem with your statement here. In the animal world, most males are only in the mating game when the females are in estrus, and for many animals that's only once a year. Bears can force female bears with cubs into estrus by killing the cubs and I think female lions work that way too. Some bird species are very close to a 50-50 effort in raising their young but they still only breed once a year.

    Somehow human males can get lucky all year round and having sex with a pregnant woman is not a problem. There are a few other species that can have sex year round, but most of those don't have sex with pregnant females. I knew there was an upside to being human.

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  22. tantalus Registered Senior Member

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    I did say each factor depends on the species, but your right, it often doesnt apply. And now that you make that point, i should recorrect my point not to just include gestation etc, but also rearing (as you mentioned), as it can also generate the bias. As you point out though, males have generated strategies in some species to quickly bring females back into the mating game. The actual term for this bias (concept) is the operational sex ratio

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operational_sex_ratio
     
  23. Asguard Kiss my dark side Valued Senior Member

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    James that's HUMANS, who has the greatest investment in the sea horse community? or the black widow spider one (where in order to mate the male has to be EATEN)
     

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