High testosterone may mean shorter lives

Apr 13, 2006

A North Dakota State University study suggests males with higher levels of testosterone sire more children, but have shorter life spans.

Wendy Reed and colleagues followed a group of dark-eyed juncos, small mountain songbirds found across North America, through seven breeding seasons. The scientists injected males with elevated levels of testosterone and found they had shorter lives, but sired more offspring -- even with females who were mated with other males.

"The surprising result was that testosterone-treated males had a higher overall fitness than control males," write the authors in the May issue of American Naturalist.

"Although testosterone increased male fitness, as measured by lifespan and number of offspring, the extended effects on offspring and female mates were generally negative and may ultimately constrain the evolution of higher testosterone levels in males," said the authors.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: Cougars' diverse diet helped them survive the Pleistocene mass extinction

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Large testicles are linked to infidelity

Jan 29, 2014

There is a clear correlation between the size of the testicles of male primates and the proneness to infidelity of females. Learn more about sex, sperm and infidelity at the anniversary exhibition Sexus.

Doing it to death: Suicidal sex in 'marsupial mice'

Oct 07, 2013

Imagine if you only had one shot at passing on your genes before you died. It happens more often in the natural world than you might expect: suicidal reproduction – where one or both sexes of a species ...

Recommended for you

Math modeling handbook now available

2 hours ago

Math comes in handy for answering questions about a variety of topics, from calculating the cost-effectiveness of fuel sources and determining the best regions to build high-speed rail to predicting the spread ...

Archaeologists, tribe clash over Native remains

2 hours ago

Archaeologists and Native Americans are clashing over Indian remains and artifacts that were excavated during a construction project in the San Francisco Bay Area, but then reburied at an undisclosed location.

Male-biased tweeting

4 hours ago

Today women take an active part in public life. Without a doubt, they also converse with other women. In fact, they even talk to each other about other things besides men. As banal as it sounds, this is far ...

Developing nations ride a motorcycle boom

6 hours ago

Asia's rapidly developing economies should prepare for a full-throttle increase in motorcycle numbers as average incomes increase, a new study from The Australian National University has found.

User comments : 0

More news stories

Male-biased tweeting

Today women take an active part in public life. Without a doubt, they also converse with other women. In fact, they even talk to each other about other things besides men. As banal as it sounds, this is far ...

Archaeologists, tribe clash over Native remains

Archaeologists and Native Americans are clashing over Indian remains and artifacts that were excavated during a construction project in the San Francisco Bay Area, but then reburied at an undisclosed location.