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Análise Psicológica

Print version ISSN 0870-8231


OLIVEIRA, Rui Filipe. Sexo, mentiras e handicaps: Reflexões sobre os mecanismos de selecção sexual. Aná. Psicológica [online]. 1997, vol.15, n.1, pp.149-160. ISSN 0870-8231.

In the present paper the author reviews the different models of sexual selection, namely the sexy sons theory, the good genes theory and the sensory bias theory. The particular case of the possible action of sexual selection mechanisms in arena breeding systems, on which males gather to display to females, is analysed as these systems promote the occurrence of male-male competition and female mate choice mechanisms. In this context special attention is paid to two phenomena: (a) the possible existence of passive mechanisms of female mate choice which generate consistent patterns of preferences, such as the known case of the female preference for males with more central territories in leks; (b) the possibility that there are non-genetic benefits for females in lek-breeding systems, which may account for the patterns of female mate choice found. Finally, the immunocompetence handicap model is discussed and evidences are presented which point to a role for androgens as physiological mediators of male phenotypic qualities.

Keywords : Sexual selection; Mate choice; intra-sexual competition; Androgens; Leks.

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