A male hoping to attract a female's attention typically needs something to help him stand out from the crowd, and the inhabitants of the animal kingdom are no exception, with peacocks representing particularly showy lovers.
However, in a new study, researchers found that even though peacocks put on some of the most striking and theatrical courtship displays, peahens almost always gazed at the lower part of the peacock's train of feathers, particularly below the neck.
"The females were primarily looking at the lower portion of the males' display," said study author Jessica Yorzinski, an evolutionary biologist at Purdue University in Lafayette, Ind. "They rarely looked at his head, or anything above it. The males put on this huge display, and females seem to look at only a small portion of it."