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Sexual Selection
By Mahnoor Khan…read more

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The Nature of Sexual selection
Within the animal kingdom male species are brightly coloured
compared to females e.g. peacocks tail. Darwin(1874) suggests this
is due to the idea of sexual selection, were advantageous traits
enhance the chance of reproduction e.g. bright coloured feathers
are attractive
· Intra-sexual selection-(mate competition) members of a similar
species compete with each other in order to access their
female/male counter parts. If successful the individual can
successfully pass on their genes to the next generation.
· Inter-sexual selection-(mate choice) If one member of a species
posses certain attributes which are favourable to the opposite sex,
e.g. tall men. Then this quality would develop over time so that
there is an increase in the number of tall men. The preference of
one sex determines how the others must compete…read more

Slide 3

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Short-term mating preference
According to the parental investment theory men are
evolved so that they have a desire for casual sex, earlier
on in a relationship , this is an evolutionary pressure .
However, females are not subjected to such pressures . If
a male impregnates a large number of females he can
increase his gene pull, as he passes many copies of his
genes. Where as a female who has intercourse with the
same number of males would only produce one offspring.
A male who can impregnate a large number of women in a
short period of time can pass on his genes . Buss (2007)
males lower their standards in short term relationships to
increase mating opportunities. Buss and Schmit (1993)-
males have decrease in attraction to females following sex.…read more

Slide 4

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Long-term mating preference
Both partners invest heavily in any offspring. Poor long
term mate choice could be disastrous for both sexes
because they would have wasted valuable resources.
Females are attracted to males who:
· Able to invest resources in her and her children
· Able to physically protect her and her children
· Good parent
· Sufficiently compatible to ensure minimal costs to her and
her children…read more

Slide 5

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Buss 1989
· 10,000 people from 37 countries were asked what they
look for in a marriage partner:
· Women preferred males who were "Good finance
prospects" - Males with resources or attributes e.g.
· Males were more concerned about the physical quality of
their mate, this is due to the idea of an attractive women
being more fertile
· Also males preferred younger women emphasizing on the
higher potential of fertility
· Both sexes valued intelligent kind and dependent partners
this is due to the idea of them being good parents who
valued long term relationships and a high willingness to
help their mate…read more

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The logic of sexual selection
Being choosy requires time and energy and may also impair
survival. Sexual selection is random mating which
essentially is stupid mating.
However, It pays to be choosy because the genetic quality
of a mate will contribute towards the offspring . So a low
quality mate who is unattractive and unhealthy will be more
likely to produce an offspring who is also unhealthy and
unattractive.…read more

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