Animal Sex

From an evolutionary and biological perspective, animals are driven to have sex in order to procreate. But there is a lot more to sexual relations between animals. Animal sex is at least as strange and varied as human sex. A male might copulate with many females. And female animals of many species can be choosy, too. Homosexuality is common. Monogamy is rare. And the animal kingdom is full of swingers. In short, with animals, sex can be wild.
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How Sex Organs Get Their Start
Python embryo
November 5th, 2014
New research shows how external genitals arose from very different starting places for reptiles and mammals.
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Animal Sex: How Koalas Do It
Koala bears sleeping up in the trees.
June 29th, 2014
Koalas may be cute and cuddly, sleeping 18 to 22 hours a day, but they can become vicious when it's time to get down to business. Here's a look at how the marsupials mate.
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Ant Sperm Bundle Up to Outrace the Competition
Sperm bundles of the desert ant <em>Cataglyphis savignyi</em>.
June 10th, 2014
The sperm of the desert ant Cataglyphis savignyi swim in bundles, a rare example of sperm cooperation. The teamwork boosts the swimming speed of the sperm, potentially providing a reproductive advantage.
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Animal Sex: How Porcupines Do It
A North American porcupine
August 2nd, 2014
Porcupine mating involves short periods of fertility, urinary ejaculation and vicious battles between males. In the end the female controls how things play out, and, yes, she must lay down her quills so a male can safely mount her.
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Brown Bears Caught Performing Oral Sex
June 17th, 2014
The club of fellatio-loving animals just gained a new member: bears. Scientists have observed a pair of male brown bears in captivity in Croatia that regularly engaged in oral sex over several years.
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The First Vertebrate Sexual Organs Evolved as an Extra Pair of Legs
placoderm, fish sex
June 10th, 2014
We humans use the euphemism for sex that “we like to get a leg over” but the first jawed vertebrates – the placoderms – they liked to get a leg in.
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Animal Sex: How Sea Turtles Do It
Mating green sea turtles (Chelonia mydas) in the Galapagos Islands.
May 5th, 2014
During mating, the male sea turtle will reach his tail underneath the back end of the female's shell. His long penis, which can be almost half the length of his shell, will emerge from his cloaca to penetrate and inseminate the female's cloaca.
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Geckos in Space! Lizards Are No Strangers to the Cosmos
Geckos Hand Roscosmos
July 30th, 2014
Geckos were research stars in space long before the outpouring of media attention that focused on their mission last week. Before space agencies can begin complicated experiments, scientists need to determine how these tiny lizards adapt to life in space.
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Motherless Male Zebra Finches Prefer Same-Sex Mates
zebra finches
June 17th, 2014
Male zebra finches prefer to form lifelong pair bonds with other males if they're raised by their dad alone, new research shows. This mate choice is likely the result of males "imprinting" on their fathers, researchers say.
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Animal Sex: How Jellyfish Do It
a pair of jellyfish mating.
May 29th, 2014
Jellyfish mating involves courtship dances, swamps of reproductive material and buds, or tiny clonal outgrowths.
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