Flies with brothers make gentler lovers

Written by | January 23, 2014 | 0

Flies who play the mating game while also living with their brothers are gentler to females during sex and tend to hassle them less, according a study by British scientists.

The study found that unrelated male flies compete more fiercely for female attention than related flies, pestering them more often for sex and leaving them little time to sleep or eat.

“Brothers don’t need to compete so much with each other for female attention since their genes will get passed on if their sibling mates successfully anyway,” said Dr Tommaso Pizzari of Oxford University’s zoology department, who led the study.

“Their more relaxed attitude to mating results in fewer fights and they also harm the females less as their courting is not so aggressive.”

The scientists also found that female mates of competing unrelated flies tend to have shorter reproductive lives and produce fewer offspring when males constantly harass them.

Filed in: Science

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