Understanding Competition for Mates in Animals
- Animals compete for mates as humans do
- Animals practice monogamy, polygamy, and promiscuity
Competition between members of the same animal species (Intraspecific competition) is common among wild animals. It is a major force behind the evolution of traits and behaviors in the animals. One of the common forms is competition for mates in animals, resulting in the evolution of characteristics like sexual dimorphism, mating displays, and social systems, including how they group, their parental care patterns, and mating system.
Mating Systems in Wild Animals
Different animals have some interesting and varying social systems. Below, we expound on different mating systems in wild animals:
A mating system refers to the way in which organisms from the same species relate in regards to their sexual behavior. Some of the common systems include:
This refers to when an animal chooses one mating partner for reproduction and the care of its offspring.
In animal polygamy, a member of either sex develops interest and has multiple mating partners. This could be a male animal mating with different female partners, also referred to as polygamy or one female mating with different males in what is referred to as polyandry.
Promiscuity, like in humans, refers to when a member of one sex mates with another member of a different gender within the same social group. Since animals have no moral issue with such arrangements, they continue to flourish among different populations.
It is a natural process for animals to mate with others of the opposite sex. The system does not have an external influence or interference, as the animals know how to choose their mates. It is quite an interesting discovery to have, right?
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