Encyclopedia of Evolutionary Psychological Science

Living Edition
| Editors: Todd K. Shackelford, Viviana A. Weekes-Shackelford

Male Counter Strategies to Cyclic Shifts

  • Robert P. BurrissEmail author
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-16999-6_2003-1



Women’s mating psychology, behavior, and attractiveness shift over their menstrual cycle. Men may have evolved strategies to mitigate any undesirable effects of these shifts on their own fitness.


Human female fertility varies over the menstrual cycle. The likelihood that a single act of intercourse will result in conception is greatest in the days preceding ovulation. At this time, women are more attractive and are more driven to enhance their attractiveness. Androphilic women become more interested in men who are not their primary partner, and their preference for physically and behaviorally feminine men decreases. Because men who are women’s primary partners risk desertion or (if their partner engages in short-term sexual relationships with other men) investing in biologically unrelated offspring, they have likely experienced selection pressure to deploy counterstrategies that mitigate the effects of...

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of PsychologyUniversity of BaselBaselSwitzerland

Section editors and affiliations

  • Joseph A Camilleri
    • 1
  1. 1.Westfield State UniversityWestfieldUSA