Male-like ornamentation in female hummingbirds results from social harassment rather than sexual selection

Posted by Douglas on

Jay J. Falk. Michael S. Webster, Dustin R. Rubenstein

Published: August 26, 2021



  • Female white-necked jacobins are polymorphic—30% have male-like plumage
  • All juveniles have male-like plumage, excluding sexual selection as an explanation
  • Male-like females receive less con- and heterospecific social harassment
  • Thus, male-like ornamentation in females can arise purely through non-sexual means

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