Elaborate male and female plumage can be maintained by mutual sexual selection and function as a mate-choice or status signal in both sexes. Both male and female Turquoise-browed Motmot (Eumomota superciliosa) have long tails that terminate in widened blue-and-black rackets that appear to hang, unattached, below the body of the bird. I tested whether mutual sexual selection maintains the Turquoise-browed Motmot's elaborate tail plumage by testing the prediction that mating occurs in an assortative manner for tail plumage. I also tested whether assortative mating occurs for body size, a potential measure of dominance, and for phenotypic condition, a measure of individual quality. Assortative mating was measured (1) within all pairs in the study population, (2) within newly formed pairs, and (3) within experimentally induced pairs that formed after removal of females from stable pairs. Assortative mating was not found for tail plumage, body size, or phenotypic condition in any of these samples. Therefore, there was no support for the “mutual sexual selection” hypothesis. I discuss the hypothesis that the tail is sexually selected in males only, and that natural selection accounts for the evolutionary maintenance of the elaborate female tail.
Ausencia de Apareamiento Asociativo con Respecto a la Cola, el Tamaño Corporal o la Condición en Eumomota superciliosa