Sexual Selection in Males and Females

  title={Sexual Selection in Males and Females},
  author={Tim H. Clutton‐Brock},
  pages={1882 - 1885}
Research on sexual selection shows that the evolution of secondary sexual characters in males and the distribution of sex differences are more complex than was initially suggested but does not undermine our understanding of the evolutionary mechanisms involved. However, the operation of sexual selection in females has still received relatively little attention. Recent studies show that both intrasexual competition between females and male choice of mating partners are common, leading to strong… 

Reproductive competition and sexual selection

  • T. Clutton‐Brock
  • Biology
    Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences
  • 2017
It is argued that different approaches provide complementary insights into the causes of sex differences in reproductive competition, the operation of sexual selection and the evolution of secondary sexual characters and that improvements in the understanding of the Evolution of Secondary sexual characters will require a more comprehensive understanding ofThe ways in which social and ecological conditions modify reproductive competition and development in females and males.

Mating failures as a consequence of sexual selection on females

Evidence of mating failures in two groups of insects, empidid flies and tettigoniid Orthoptera (katydids), are examined, showing that there are mating failures by females in populations in which the direction of sexual selection appears to be reversed, but not in populations where sexual selection seems to be stronger on males.

Sexual selection in females across the animal tree of life

The pioneers of sexual selection theory proposed that males are generally ‘eager’ whereas females are rather ‘coy’ with respect to mating. This male-centred perspective on sexual selection continues

Sexual selection in females

The evolution and significance of male mate choice.

Sexual selection maintains a female-specific character in a species with dynamic sex roles

The results indicate that even brief and circumscribed periods of intrasexual competition among females can lead to sexual selection on morphological characters and that this selection may not depend on multiple mating.

Sexual Selection and Female Competition

Sexual selection studies have traditionally focused on reproductive competition as a typical male characteristic, and regarded females as largely passive. However, empirical evidence now shows female

Social competition and selection in males and females

It is suggested that classifications of selection based on distinction between the form of competition or the components of fitness that are involved introduce unnecessary complexities and that the most useful approach in understanding the evolution and distribution of differences and similarities between the sexes is to compare the operation of selection in males and females in different reproductive systems.

Stronger net selection on males across animals

A comparative approach was used to show that net selection is indeed stronger in males in species prone to intense sexual selection, and that the genome is often confronted with a more stressful environment when expressed in males, supporting a long-standing key assumption required for sexual selection to bolster adaptation.



Potential Reproductive Rates and the Operation of Sexual Selection

This framework for relating sex differences in mating competition to the operational sex ratio, potential reproductive rates, and parental expenditure differs from Triver's concept of the relation between parental investment and mating competition in three ways.

Sexually selected females in the monogamous Western Australian seahorse

It is provided empirical documentation that sexual selection can also act strongly on females in a natural population with a monogamous mating system, and indicates that substantial sexual selection on females is a potentially important but under-appreciated evolutionary phenomenon in monogamous species.

Costs of breeding and their effects on the direction of sexual selection

Increased costs of breeding can explain female competition and increased male choosiness under resource limitation in one species of bushcricket, but in general, males lived longer than females and the possible reasons are discussed.

Intrasexual competition and sexual selection in cooperative mammals

It is shown that females gain greater benefits from acquiring dominant status than males and traits that increase competitive ability exert a stronger influence on their breeding success, and the extent to which competition for breeding opportunities between females can affect the evolution of sex differences and the operation of sexual selection.

Unifying and Testing Models of Sexual Selection

This work reviews evolutionary explanations for the relationship between anisogamy, potential reproductive rates, parental care, sex roles, and mate choice, and considers other forms of selection that can make females mate nonrandomly.

Experimental reversal of courtship roles in an insect

It is confirmed and shown that an increase in food from a low level results in a change from role-reversal to the typical roles, which supports the theory that variation in relative male parental investment controls sexual differences.

The Descent of Man and Selection in Relation to Sex: Contents

Part II. Sexual Selection (continued): 12. Secondary sexual characters of fishes, amphibians and reptiles 13. Secondary sexual characters of birds 14. Birds (continued) 15. Birds (continued) 16.

Unusually dynamic sex roles in a fish

This is the first time that a shift in sex roles has been shown in a vertebrate, and it might be explained by a large decline in male abundance, strongly skewing the sex ratio towards females.

Intra-sexual selection in Drosophila.

Epigamic selection includes the major part of what Darwin meant by sexual selection, and is introduced to apply to characters which increased the fertility of a given mating and therefore had a selective value for the species as a whole.

Potential causes and life-history consequences of sexual size dimorphism in mammals

  • J. Isaac
  • Biology, Environmental Science
  • 2005
Evaluated research on the causes of SSD in mammals finds several promising avenues of research are currently overlooked and long-term studies, which have previously been biased toward ungulates, should be carried out on a variety of taxa.