Pair bond

In biology, a pair bond is the strong affinity that develops in some species between the male and female in a breeding pair. Pair-bonding, from 1940, is a term frequently used in sociobiology and evolutionary psychology circles and is typically meant to imply either a life-long monogamous relationship or a stage of mating interaction in socially monogamous species. It is sometimes used in reference to human relationships.

Pair bonding is also sometimes seen between individuals of the same sex, as demonstrated by behavior similar to that of male-female pair-bonded individuals.


According to evolutionary psychologists David Barash and Judith Lipton, from their 2001 book The Myth of Monogamy, there are several varieties of pair bonds:


When discussing the social life of the bank swallow, Lipton and Barash state:

For about four days immediately prior to egg-laying, when copulations lead to fertilizations, the male bank swallow is very busy, attentively guarding his female. Before this time, as well as after-that is, when her eggs are not ripe, and again after his genes are safely tucked away inside the shells-he goes seeking extra-pair copulations with the mates of other males...who, of course, are busy with defensive mate-guarding of their own.

Counterpoint: In various species, males provide parental care and females mate with multiple males. For example, recent empirical studies show that extra-pair copulation frequently occurs in monogamous birds in which a "social" father provides intensive care for its "social" offspring

University of Florida scientist reports that male sand gobies work harder at building nests and taking care of eggs when females are present - the first time such "courtship parental care" has been documented in any species.


See also

External links

Index: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

This article is based on "Pair bond" from the free encyclopedia Wikipedia ( It is licensed under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation Licencse. In the Wikipedia you can find a list of the authors by visiting the following address: