Fussy fish pick a partner from afar

PITY the poor male salmon. In the race to become a father, it’s the female who calls the shots. Fluid she releases into the water with her eggs can tip the balance in favour of a particular male by speeding up the rate at which his sperm swim – a strategy thought to help select the best possible mate. “We were really struck by this result,” says Neil Gemmell at the University of Otago in Dunedin, New Zealand, who looked at the sperm of blue-green chinook salmon. Females of animal species such at crickets, which fertilise their eggs inside their bodies, are already known to exert some control over which sperm get lucky,
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