Thursday, December 15

sexual attraction:

In species which reproduce sexually, sexual attraction is attraction to other members of the same species for reproduction. This type of attraction is a very important survival factor.

Sexual attraction in animals

Sexual attractiveness in non-human animals depends on a wide variety of factors. Often, there is some element of the animal's body which is adapted to be sexually attractive to the opposite sex: the bright plumage and crests of some species of birds, for example. In many species, there are behaviors which appear to be adapted for sexual display. Some of these attributes seem to be adapted to demonstrate fitness and health, for example by demonstrating the ability to sustain an 'expensive' feature with no other apparent survival function. The adaptation takes place in the displaying gender in parallel to the development of the prefenece in the other gender. It is possible for the adaptation to be so expensive in terms of fitness that it causes major survival problems (see game theory), especially where, as in moose, a direct competitive element is involved.

Frequently (especially in insects) chemical signals are used to generate sexual interest and to locate potential mates. These signals, known as pheromones, can produce a profound effect upon an animal's behaviour even when present in very minute quantities.

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