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Oestrous females avoid mating in front of adult male bystanders in wild chacma baboons

Baniel, A; Delaunay, A; Cowlishaw, G; Huchard, E; (2019) Oestrous females avoid mating in front of adult male bystanders in wild chacma baboons. Royal Society Open Science , 6 (1) , Article 181009. 10.1098/rsos.181009. Green open access

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Abstract

In social species, female mating strategies can be constrained by both male and female groupmates through sexual conflict and reproductive competition, respectively. This study tests if females adjust their sexual behaviour according to the presence of male and female bystanders in wild chacma baboons (Papio ursinus) and assesses their relative importance. Our results show that oestrous females initiate fewer copulations in the presence of adult male bystanders, irrespective of whether they are mate-guarded or not. This inhibitory effect probably reflects a response to indirect sexual coercion by males, whose close proximity may dissuade females to initiate copulations with rival males to avoid punishment and/or aggressive mating interference. By contrast, females initiate more matings with their mate-guard in the presence of higher-ranking female bystanders, which may reflect an attempt to secure bodyguard services from their mate when they feel threatened. These results emphasize the importance of intra- and intersexual conflicts in shaping female sexual behaviour in this promiscuous society.

Type: Article
Title: Oestrous females avoid mating in front of adult male bystanders in wild chacma baboons
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1098/rsos.181009
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1098/rsos.181009
Language: English
Additional information: This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in the credit line; if the material is not included under the Creative Commons license, users will need to obtain permission from the license holder to reproduce the material. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Life Sciences > Div of Biosciences
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10067451
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