A male South American sealion with three females looking upwards


Polygynous sexual behaviour is the system in which a single male mates with multiple females, but each female mates with only one male. This usually entails fierce competition between the males during the breeding season. Females invest more heavily in their offspring and all the parental duties fall to the mother. They become much more choosy about their mate as a result, while the males attempt to have as many mates as possible in order to leave a maximum number of offspring. However many males fail to win or impress a female and remain unmated their entire lives.

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Animals with this behaviour





Ray-finned fishes




BBC News about Polygynous

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