The Rare Male Effect: Unusual Looks Get the Ladies


GUPPY LOVE There’s a lot of color variation among male guppies, and those with rare color variations seem to have the best luck at landing mates.

Female guppies love a guy with unusual coloring or patterns on his tail. Scientists have known about the “rare male preference” for some time, but recent field tests in Trinidad with wild guppies confirmed what had already been found in the field – guppies with unusual coloring were more likely to father offspring.

This preference for the unusual is in itself, unusual. Darwinism dictates that the strongest and fittest survive. But what we see with guppies, fruit flies, and some other species is that the ladies like a man who flaunts his differences. Scientists theorize that this could be an attempt to avoid incest and therefore a better evolutionary bet.

Perhaps this explains fashion’s infatuation with highly unusual looking models, like those here.

In another study, scientists found that the more attractive (bigger) the male two spotted goby, the more likely he was to hold out for only the hottest females (those with the most yellow bellies).

Lesson learned: You’d better be super hot or really work that unusual look to get some lovin’. Brought to you by science.


Rick Genest, aka Zombie Boy, a Canadian artist and fashion model known for the skeletal tattoos covering the majority of his body.


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