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A Red Bird in a Brown BagThe Function and Evolution of Colorful Plumage in the House Finch$
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Geoffrey E. Hill

Print publication date: 2002

Print ISBN-13: 9780195148480

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: April 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195148480.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 03 August 2021

Why Red?

Why Red?

The Evolution of Color Display

(p.249) Chapter 11 Why Red?
A Red Bird in a Brown Bag

Geoffrey E. Hill

Oxford University Press

There are a number primary models for why males in bird species like the House Finch evolved bright feather coloration: the Fisherian model of sexual selection, the honest advertisement model, the species recognition model, and the sensory bias model. Mate choice experiments showed that female House Finches from all populations showed a preference for males with large patches of bright red feathers. Males in the populations with small patches of red also show delayed maturation of plumage. These observations are most consistent with the honest advertisement hypothesis.

Keywords:   sexual selection models, Fisherian model, honest advertisement model, species recognition model, sensory bias model, delayed plumage maturation

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