Preferences for ultraviolet partners in the blue tit

Hunt, Sarah, Cuthill, Innes C., Bennett, Andrew T. D. and Griffiths, Richard 1999, Preferences for ultraviolet partners in the blue tit, Animal behaviour, vol. 58, no. 4, pp. 809-815.

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Title Preferences for ultraviolet partners in the blue tit
Author(s) Hunt, Sarah
Cuthill, Innes C.
Bennett, Andrew T. D.
Griffiths, Richard
Journal name Animal behaviour
Volume number 58
Issue number 4
Start page 809
End page 815
Publisher Elsevier
Place of publication London, England
Publication date 1999-10
ISSN 0003-3472
1095-8282
Summary The preference of female blue tits, Parus caeruleus, is correlated with the brightness of the ultraviolet (UV) crest; there is also assortative mating with respect to the crest's UV/violet chroma. However, manipulation of plumage reflectance is necessary to infer a direct causal link between UV plumage and mate choice. We gave both male and female blue tits a choice between a W-reflecting ('UV+') partner and a partner whose UV plumage reflectance had been removed ('UV-'). Male blue tits significantly preferred UV+ females. Similarly, female blue tits tended to prefer UV-reflecting males, but their UV+ preferences were nonsignificant. Neither sex showed a preference when conspecifics were replaced by a heterospecific. This study suggests mutual mate choice but male choice may be more strongly influenced by the visual appearance of potential mates. This is one of a few studies to show male mate preferences and the first demonstration of a direct relationship between UV reflectance and;male mate choice. (C) 1999 The Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour.
Language eng
Field of Research 060599 Microbiology not elsewhere classified
HERDC Research category C1.1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©11999, The Association for the Study of Animal Behaviour
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30022776

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