Older red-breasted flycatcher males (after the second year) have an orange patch on the throat and breast. To date, the occurrence of this ornament has been explained in terms of male-male interactions. In this paper, we show that badge size also influences the mating success of red-breasted-flycatcher males. In addition to the size of the ornament, arrival time was a second factor related to the males' mating success, but no effects of body parameters such as wing length, tarsus length, and body mass were observed. Mated males arrived significantly earlier than unmated ones. The arrival time of males was negatively correlated to body mass and positively correlated to tarsus length but no relation to wing length or badge size was observed. No correlations between badge size and body parameters were observed. This ornament was evolved through sexual selection, with both male-male interaction and selection pressure arising from female preference for males with larger badges.
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Vol. 29 • No. 12