Courtship Disruption Modifies Mate Choice in a Lek-Breeding Bird

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Science  15 Feb 1985:
Vol. 227, Issue 4688, pp. 778-780
DOI: 10.1126/science.227.4688.778


The aggregation of displaying males in lek-breeding birds is often associated with disruption of courtship and mating but effects of this disruption on mate choice have not been shown. In a 4-year study of Rupicola rupicola in Suriname, interference among territorial adult males disrupted 31 percent of all female courtship visits and terminated 32 percent of all matings at a lek where there were an average of 55 territorial males. Disruption in this rain forest species caused females to modify their courtship and mating patterns, and males that used intense and persistent disruption received a disproportionate share of this redirected mate choice.

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