Feeds

Moaning moose cows provoke punch-ups among bulls

Alaskan wilderness just like Newcastle on a Friday night

Intelligent flash storage arrays

Researchers from Idaho State University have proved that moose mating rituals follow a similar pattern to that displayed among humans in Newcastle pubs on a Friday night – that females moaning about sexual advances by inadequate males increases the chance of bloke-on-bloke violence.

Scientists already knew that a female moose will "protest moan" when approached by an amorous stud during the autumn rutting season, when the chaps battle it out for the chance to mate with picky girls. While a male might couple with various partners, the polygynous nature of moose society means the ladies take just one partner, and are evidently keen to hook up with the right beau.

Dr Terry Bowyer and his team ventured into Alaska's Denali National Park and Preserve and observed that Alces alces gigas females actually moaned more when approached by smaller males, to "reduce harassment" and "assure a mating opportunity with the most dominant male".

Regarding the immediate result of this whining, Bowyer explained to the BBC: "Male aggression was more common when females gave protest moans than when they did not, indicating that this vocalisation incited male-male aggression."

The researchers conclude in their abstract in Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology: "Such a subtle mechanism of indirect mate choice by females may occur in other vertebrates in which choice is limited by a mating system in which male-male combat and male dominance over females reduces opportunities for female choice. The importance of female choice may be undervalued in studies of sexual selection in mammals." ®

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Boffins who stare at goats: I do believe they’re SHRINKING
Alpine chamois being squashed by global warming
Comet Siding Spring revealed as flying molehill
Hiding from this space pimple isn't going to do humanity's reputation any good
Experts brand LOHAN's squeaky-clean box
Phytosanitary treatment renders Vulture 2 crate fit for export
LONG ARM of the SAUR: Brachially gifted dino bone conundrum solved
Deinocheirus mirificus was a bit of a knuckle dragger
MARS NEEDS WOMEN, claims NASA pseudo 'naut: They eat less
'Some might find this idea offensive' boffin admits
No sail: NASA spikes Sunjammer
'Solar sail' demonstrator project binned
Carry On Cosmonaut: Willful Child is a poor taste Star Trek parody
Cringeworthy, crude and crass jokes abound in Steven Erikson’s sci-fi debut
prev story

Whitepapers

Choosing cloud Backup services
Demystify how you can address your data protection needs in your small- to medium-sized business and select the best online backup service to meet your needs.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.