The Washington PostThe Washington Post

Less attractive, less picky: How mating is changing in a hotter world

By Kasha Patel

28 Nov 2022 · 6 min read

Editor's Note

The Washington Post examines how animals are adapting their mating behaviors to the changing climate - and there are suggestions humans are following suit.

Dating and mating have never been hotter - and that's not always a good thing.

Take the male dragonfly, which tries to impress a lady with striking yellow, red, brown and black wing designs like a flittering Pablo Picasso. But some males are finding that looking that attractive in darker pigments isn't worth the energy in a warming world. Now many are losing the bling in their wing to help stay cool - even if it could disappoint the ladies.

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