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Trends Ecol Evol. 1991 Apr;6(4):118-21. doi: 10.1016/0169-5347(91)90089-G.

Sexual competition among females: What causes courtship-role reversal?

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  • 1Zoology Dept, Erindale Campus, University of Toronto, Missisauga, Ontario L5L 1C6, Canada.


In most animals, males are the competitive sex whereas females are typically non-competitive and choosy of mates. In a variety of taxa, certain species (or populations within species) show a reversal in these typical courtship roles. Recent research with these organisms supports a central tenet of sexual selection theory: that it is the relative investment of the sexes in offspring that controls the number of males and females available for mating, and thus is the main determinant of the degree of sexual competition in each sex.

Copyright © 1991. Published by Elsevier Ltd.


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