Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Mating That Causes Injuries

Date:
February 24, 2009
Source:
Uppsala Universitet
Summary:
Researchers can now show that what is good for one sex is not always good for the other sex. In fact, evolutionary conflicts between the two sexes cause characteristics and behaviors that are downright injurious to the opposite sex.

Researchers at Uppsala University can now show that what is good for one sex is not always good for the other sex.  In fact, evolutionary conflicts between the two sexes cause characteristics and behaviors that are downright injurious to the opposite sex.

In both males and females in the animal world it is common – much more common that one might like to think – for one sex to evince characteristics and properties that are injurious to individuals of the other sex, according to Professor G๖ran Arnqvist at the Department of Ecology and Evolution, who adds:

“One especially tricky case involves species where the males have mating organs that are supplied with hooks, barbs, and flukes that cause internal injuries in females during mating.  This is extremely common among insects, but it also occurs in many other animal groups.”

The Uppsala scientists have studied seed beetles and their mating behavior. G๖ran relates that the males’ mating organ is rather similar to a medieval spiked club and that it causes severe wounds in females during mating.  But since it is never a good idea for a male merely to injure a female, the researchers have assumed that these structures serve another purpose and that the injury is an unfortunate side effect.

“Females’ injuries as such do not benefit the male she mated with. It has been suggested rather that the injuries are a side effect of other benefits the males reap from the barbs.  Now, for the first time, we are able to show that this is the case,” says G๖ran Arnqvist.

Despite these costs, females mate with multiple males.

“We also show that males with long barbs cause more severe injuries to females, but also that these males have a greater rate of fertilization success,” says G๖ran Arnqvist.

The barbs are thus extremely important to males in their competition to be able to fertilize an egg.  When females mate with two males, it is more often the male with the longer barbs that fertilizes her eggs.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Uppsala Universitet. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Cosima Hotzy and G๖ran Arnqvist. Sperm Competition Favors Harmful Males in Seed Beetles. Current Biology, 19 February 2009 DOI: 10.1016/j.cub.2009.01.045

Cite This Page:

Uppsala Universitet. "Mating That Causes Injuries." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 24 February 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/02/090220075144.htm>.
Uppsala Universitet. (2009, February 24). Mating That Causes Injuries. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 27, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/02/090220075144.htm
Uppsala Universitet. "Mating That Causes Injuries." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/02/090220075144.htm (accessed August 27, 2014).

Share This




More Plants & Animals News

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Super Healthful Fruits and Vegetables: Which Are Best?

Super Healthful Fruits and Vegetables: Which Are Best?

Ivanhoe (Aug. 27, 2014) — We all know that it is important to eat our fruits and vegetables but do you know which ones are the best for you? Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com
Bad Memories Turn Good In Weird Mouse Brain Study

Bad Memories Turn Good In Weird Mouse Brain Study

Newsy (Aug. 27, 2014) — MIT researchers were able to change whether bad memories in mice made them anxious by flicking an emotional switch in the brain. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Do Couples Who Smoke Weed Together Stay Together?

Do Couples Who Smoke Weed Together Stay Together?

Newsy (Aug. 27, 2014) — A study out of University at Buffalo claims couples who smoke marijuana are less likely to experience intimate partner violence. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Panda Might Have Faked Pregnancy To Get Special Treatment

Panda Might Have Faked Pregnancy To Get Special Treatment

Newsy (Aug. 27, 2014) — A panda in China showed pregnancy symptoms that disappeared after two months of observation. One theory: Her pseudopregnancy was a ploy for perks. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins