Polyandry in animals

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Polyandry in animals is when one female mates with several males in a breeding season.[1] These males raise their own progeny without any help from females.[1]

It is much less common than polygyny in mammals. It does occur in some primates, such as marmosets, and other members of the New World monkey family Callitrichidae.

Another example is in those fish which store sperm for months. This tends to set up a kind of fitness competition between sperm. The system is called "cryptic sperm competition".

Male "pregnancy" is found in seahorse, pipefish and sea dragons.[2]

References[change | change source]

  1. 1.0 1.1 Andersson M. 2005. Current Issues – Perspectives and Reviews. Evolution of classical polyandry: three steps to female emancipation. Ethology 23, 1–24.
  2. Jones, a G., Walker, D. & Avise, J. C. Genetic evidence for extreme polyandry and extraordinary sex-role reversal in a pipefish. Proceedings: Biological Sciences 268, 2531–5 (2001).