Nature

The Sneaky Mating Strategy of Red Kangaroos

Transcript

♪♪

A MOB OF RED KANGAROOS.

THIS MALE IS A LONG WAY DOWN IN THE GROUP'S HIERARCHY.

IF HE WANTS TO HAVE YOUNG, HE'S GOING TO HAVE TO TAKE ON THIS GUY... ♪♪ ...THE ALPHA MALE.

ONLY HE HAS THE RIGHT TO MATE WITH FEMALES IN THIS GROUP.

NOW, OUR YOUNG MALE COULD CHOOSE THE HARD WAY, THE HONEST WAY, AND FIGHT HIS WAY TO THE TOP.

BUT IT COULD TAKE YEARS TO GROW STRONG ENOUGH TO DOMINATE HIS RIVALS.

AND IT'S RISKY.

WITH A KICK THAT CAN CRUSH BONE, KANGAROOS CAN INFLICT SERIOUS INJURY.

[ KANGAROOS GRUNTING ] SO INSTEAD, HE OPTS FOR PLAN 'B' -- CHEAT!

IF THE ALPHA MALE ISN'T LOOKING... AND IT'S ALWAYS WORTH CHECKING... ♪♪ ...HE TAKES A CHANCE.

THIS ILLICIT LIAISON IS ALSO IN THE BEST INTERESTS OF THE FEMALE.

BY MATING WITH MALES OTHER THAN THE ALPHA MALE, SHE CAN MIX UP THE GROUP'S GENE POOL, AND FOR THE FUTURE OF THE MOB, THIS CAN PREVENT INBREEDING AND COULD GIVE HER OFFSPRING A DISTINCT ADVANTAGE.

THE CRAFTY PAIR HAVE GOTTEN AWAY WITH IT SCOT-FREE, AND THE OLD ALPHA MALE HAS ABSOLUTELY NO IDEA THAT HE MAY NOT HAVE FATHERED THE NEXT GENERATION.


URL: https://www.pbs.org/wnet/nature/natural-born-hustlers-the-sneaky-mating-strategy-of-red-kangaroos/13717/
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