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ARES Research Seminars: Dr Mirjam Young

Determinants of paternity in wild male vervet monkeys (Chlorocebus pygerythrus)

Dr Mirjam Young

In this ARES Research Seminar, Dr Mirjam Young (Nottingham Trent University) discusses determinants of paternity in wild male vervet monkeys (Chlorocebus pygerythrus).

Past event

Event details

In most gregarious mammalian species, males dominate females and monopolise access to receptive females. In such species, male reproductive strategies are well studied but less is known about species with rarer structures, specifically, female dominance or female-male co-dominance.

To broaden our knowledge of such species, I examined the determinants of male reproductive success in vervet monkeys (Chlorocebus pygerythrus), a species showing female-male co-dominance.

I collected a comprehensive dataset including behavioural, genetic and hormonal data and data on genital colouration in South Africa. Firstly, I examined male genital colouration and behavioural displays.

Results showed individual variation in genital colouration was not influenced by male characteristics, although the frequency of the genital display was positively correlated with dominance rank.

Secondly, I investigated male reproductive success and its covariates and showed that migrating males had a higher mating success than resident males. Furthermore, male dominance rank was an important determinant of paternity even in a species where females exert mate choice.

This provides insights into male reproductive strategies, male characteristics influencing reproductive success and the potential of female mate choice in species with female-male co-dominance.

Booking information

This event is internal only for NTU staff and ARES Postgraduate students.

Virtual Event

Past event

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