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Does dig big bucks, deer study finds

Updated: May 19, 2005, 11:53 AM ET
By Daniel Woolls | Associated Press

MADRID, Spain — When male animals strut their stuff — the rainbow plumes of peacocks, the mighty tusks of an elephant — they may be flaunting their potential for fatherhood, researchers say.

Biologists working for the Spanish government's top scientific research body say they have found evidence of this phenomenon in deer that might apply to other species. Features long considered to be only for show or self-defense might indicate the quality of an animal's genes.

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