In my latest foray into the world of PR for the BioMed Central Press Office, this sweetly tragic little PR tells of research into the sexual selection behaviours of the humble house sparrow. Whereas many little girls dream of one day meeting their Prince Charming or being swept off their feet by a knight in the proverbial shining armour, the common house sparrow is apparently none too fussed, unless they happen to be a bit of a minger.
“Good quality” female house sparrows allegedly have no preference for the quality of males they mate with – in this version of survival of the fittest, as long as you’re the fittest bird in the ‘hood, it doesn’t matter what your man looks like! But according to this research from the Konrad Lorenz Institute for Ethology in Vienna, ugly female house sparrows don’t go getting ideas above their station – they’re happy to go for the attractive males as apparently, what they lack in good looks, they make up for in fatherhood skills. Ahhh…
Read the press release at EurekAlert: Ugly Betty forced to aim for Average Joe
Read the original article at BMC Evolutionary Biology: Only females in poor condition display a clear preference and prefer males with an average badge
Here’s some of the media sources that picked up on the story: