The heritability of attractiveness

Michelle L. Taylor, Nina Wedell, David J. Hosken*

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalLetter (Academic Journal)peer-review

    64 Citations (Scopus)


    Sexual selection is responsible for the evolution of numerous conspicuous and extravagant displays observed in nature - from cricket choruses to peacock's tails. A key assumption of many models of sexual selection is that attractive males father attractive sons1. However, while particular traits under sexual selection have been shown to be heritable [1,2], the evidence for the heritability of attractiveness per se is far less compelling [1,3]. This dearth of information has led to disagreement about the existence and importance of this fundamental link between sire and sons' attractiveness [4]. Here we demonstrate in Drosophila simulans that attractive fathers sire attractive sons, as assumed by theory.

    Original languageEnglish
    JournalCurrent Biology
    Issue number22
    Publication statusPublished - 20 Nov 2007


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