Repeatability of mate choice in female red jungle fowl

Torgeir S. Johnsen, Marlene Zuk

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


We staged female mate choice trials between pair of males and repeated the process for each female to determine the repeatability of female preference for male in red jungle fowl (Gallus gallus) in the first and second half of the breeding season. We measured male morphological traits (the size and color of the comb and the brightness of the hackle feathers) that female are known to use in choosing a mate. In the first half of the breeding season, females showed repeatability in their choices of mate with respect to the male's comb characters. Females did not show a repeatability preference with respect to male hackle feather, and we found no repeatedly of mate choice in the second half of the season. Females seem to primarily look at the male's comb when choosing a mate, and other ornaments seem only a secondary importance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)243-246
Number of pages4
JournalBehavioral Ecology
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1996

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Larty, Tae Kim, Vered Mirmovitch, Stacey Popma, and Kevin Sudds for taking care of the jungle fowl colony and performing measurements. We thank Larry L. Wolf, Christine R. Boake, and an anonymous reviewer for helpful comments on our manuscript This research was supported by UCR Academic Senate awards and by NSF grants IBN-9120902 and DEB-9257759 and supplements to Marlene Zuk.


  • mate choice
  • ornament
  • repeatability
  • sexual selection


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