Encyclopedia of Evolutionary Psychological Science

Living Edition
| Editors: Todd K. Shackelford, Viviana A. Weekes-Shackelford

Ovulatory Shifts in Psychology

  • Rachael CarmenEmail author
  • Haley Dillon
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-16999-6_1883-1



Hormones that induce ovulation and the changes incurred in human behavior.


Though the human ovulatory cycle is incredibly complex, it should come as no surprise that it shares striking similarities to other apes. The exact length varies depending on the individual, but the average ovulatory cycle lasts about 28 days. During the length of a cycle, a female goes through three distinct phases: menses, follicular, and luteal. Ovulation typically occurs halfway through the cycle, between the follicular and luteal phases (with the length of the follicular phase being the more variable of the two). The term peak fertility refers to a small window (usually thought to be anywhere between 2 and 6 days) when a female’s conception rate goes up. In some species (including some distant ancestors like baboons), sexual swellingis a visual indicator that a female is approaching...

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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Marist CollegePoughkeepsieUSA
  2. 2.Dominican CollegeOrangeburgUSA

Section editors and affiliations

  • Gary L Brase
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Psychological SciencesKansas State UniversityManhattanUSA