SEARCH

SEARCH BY CITATION

Abstract and Summary

A hypothesis is proposed for explaining the evolution of display courts in birds. We suggest that males who show ownership of display courts are better able to inform females of their high dominance status, which is an indicator of their quality as a sire. The elaborate display structures of bowerbirds are viewed as an extreme example of selection to show ownership of these “markers”. Specific problems with the evolution of bowers are considered.