Sexual reproduction is associated with the evolution of anisogamy and sperm-producing males and egg-laying females. The ensuing competition for mates has led to sexual selection and coevolution of the sexes. Mathematical models are extensively used to test the plausibility of different complicated scenarios for the evolution of sexual traits. Unfortunately, the diversity of models is now itself equally bewildering. Here we clarify some of the current debate by reviewing evolutionary explanations for the relationship between anisogamy, potential reproductive rates, parental care, sex roles, and mate choice. We review the benefits females might gain by mating with certain males rather than others. We also consider other forms of selection that can make females mate nonrandomly. One way empiricists can contribute to resolving theoretical disputes is to quantify the cost of expressing mating biases in the appropriate life-history currency.


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  • Article Type: Review Article
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