Search tips
Search criteria 


Logo of procbThe Royal Society PublishingProceedings BAboutBrowse by SubjectAlertsFree Trial
Proc Biol Sci. 1999 October 22; 266(1433): 2071–2074.
PMCID: PMC1690320

High variation in multiple paternity of domestic cats (Felis catus L.) in relation to environmental conditions.


Paternity was analysed in two domestic cat (Felis catus) populations differing in habitat structure (rural versus urban) and density (234 cats km-2 versus 2,091 cats km-2). A total of 312 offspring, 76 mothers and 65 putative fathers were typed at nine microsatellite loci in the two populations. Our data showed a high rate of multiple paternity in the urban population (70-83% of litters with more than one father), whereas it was much lower in the rural population (0-22% of litters with more than one), as most males were able to monopolize the entire litter. However, males reproduced as soon as they reached sexual maturity (i.e. ten months of age) in the urban population, whereas most males delayed reproduction to age three years in the rural population.

Full Text

The Full Text of this article is available as a PDF (105K).

Selected References

These references are in PubMed. This may not be the complete list of references from this article.
  • Emlen ST, Oring LW. Ecology, sexual selection, and the evolution of mating systems. Science. 1977 Jul 15;197(4300):215–223. [PubMed]
  • Menotti-Raymond MA, O'Brien SJ. Evolutionary conservation of ten microsatellite loci in four species of Felidae. J Hered. 1995 Jul-Aug;86(4):319–322. [PubMed]
  • Pontier D, Fromont E, Courchamp F, Artois M, Yoccoz NG. Retroviruses and sexual size dimorphism in domestic cats (Felis catus L.). Proc Biol Sci. 1998 Feb 7;265(1392):167–173. [PMC free article] [PubMed]

Articles from Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences are provided here courtesy of The Royal Society