Friday, April 29, 2016

Lab meeting on female mate choice

Posted by Katrine Lund-Hansen

I thought this week we could read a paper by one of the invited speakers at Evolution in Sweden 2016, Sergey Gavrilets. There are many papers to choose from, so I tried to pick one that should be of general interest, even though it is a quantitative genetic model. So nothing about flies this time :)

Time: May 3rd, 10:00
Where: Argumentet, Ecology Building 2nd floor
Cake: Of course!

Title: The evolution of female mate choice by sexual conflict

Abstract: Although empirical evidence has shown that many male traits have evolved via sexual selection by female mate choice, our understanding of the adaptive value of female mating preferences is still very incomplete. It has recently been suggested that female mate choice may result from females evolving resistance rather than attraction to males, but this has been disputed. Here, we develop a quantitative genetic model showing that sexual conflict over mating indeed results in the joint evolution of costly female mate choice and exaggerated male traits under a wide range of circumstances. In contrast to traditional explanations of costly female mate choice, which rely on indirect genetic benefits, our model shows that mate choice can be generated as a side–effect of females evolving to reduce the direct costs of mating.

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