Males who spend time getting to know femalestend to pick up sexual signalsbetter than their less attentive counterparts.
"Many primates, including humans, receive signals from individuals with whom they are familiar," said James Higham, who led the study at the University of Chicago.
"The results...shed new light on the role that experience can play in reading others' mating signals," said Laurie Santos, study co-author and psychologist from Yale University.
Scientists have long been curious about how females of some primate species, including humans, advertise their fertility and how males recognise often subtle signals, the journalProceedings of the Royal Society B reports.
Previous research has shown that the faces of female monkeys sometimes darken when they are fertile, but not all females show exactly the same changes, according to a Yale statement .
Researchers looked at a rhesus macaque population on the island of Cayo Santiago, off the coast of Puerto Rico, testing whether males could detect when a female was ovulating from her picture alone.
They presented male monkeys with two pictures of the same female's face: one from a day on which she was ovulating, and one from a time before she was ovulating.
More than 80 per cent of males from the female's group were able to discriminate between the two faces, looking longer at the photograph in which she was ovulating than the one in which she was pre-fertile.
This result suggests that males may increase their chance of detecting a female's receptivity by getting to know her
In her Wall Street Journal article "Why Do We Let Them Dress Like That?" Jennifer Moses argues that the reason we mothers let our daughters "dress like prostitutes" is largely due to our own sexual regrets. She goes on to speculate that mothers who came of age in what she considers a post-feminist society were perhaps too free with their sexual experimenting.readmore Underage Prostitution Sex Scandal "Why Do We Let Them Dress Like That?"