... But not because they want to practice all the time, but because this competition increases their mortality.
ANN ARBOR, MICHIGAN.-- Two factors related to the level of male reproductive competition contribute to higher rates of risk-taking and mortality. The first factor: polygyny, the social situation in which one man maintains sexual relations with many women (the opposite is polyandry? one women and many men). Several species of primates show high levels of polygyny, where one dominant male mates with most of the females in the group, and other males are left out. Human cultures have varying degrees of polygyny, and experts found that the more prevalent the practice, the higher the rate of male mortality.
The second factor: the degree of economic inequality. In mate selection, men are valued for the resource investment that they can provide, bringing benefits their offspring. The wider the gap between rich and poor, the more likely men are to die young. In less egalitarian societies, a man with what scientists call "resource control" -money, property and economic security- is more likely to find sexual partners. And so the battle to be "king of the hill" turns deadly. When winners take all, men have very little to lose and a whole lot to gain by risking everything to get to the top. (SOURCE: University of Michigan)
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