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In Brief

To Spotlight Endangered Species ... Condoms?

Center for Biological Diversity condoms with polar bear
The Center for Biological Diversity is handing out free condoms with a side of wildlife conservation. (Image credit: Center for Biological Diversity )

Is that a polar bear, or are you just happy to see me? Condoms emblazoned with the friendly faces of endangered species may or may not spice up your love life, but wildlife advocates are hoping they remind you to remember the environment.

The Center for Biological Diversity is giving out 25,000 free Endangered Species condoms this holiday season. Each prophylactic features a species under threat along with a slogan, including "wrap with care … save the polar bear," and "In the sack? Save the Leatherback?"

The Center has been giving away the cute condoms since 2009, and has distributed about 500,000 so far. This winter, they're popping up in all 50 states in locations as diverse as yoga studios, skate parks, churches and doctor's offices.

Why pair protected species with protected sex? According to the Center, population growth keeps endangered animals down.

"The Earth's population now tops 7 billion people, and that has a huge impact on wildlife, climate and the resources we all need to survive," Taralynn Reynolds, population and sustainability organizer at the Center, said in a statement. "These are big issues that need to be talked about, and the Endangered Species Condoms give people a fun, unique way to start the conversation."

Earth's population is projected to hit 11 billion by 2100. The only question left is whether bringing up the plight of the snowy plover in bed will kill the mood.

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Stephanie Pappas
Stephanie Pappas

Stephanie Pappas is a contributing writer for Live Science, covering topics ranging from geoscience to archaeology to the human brain and behavior. She was previously a senior writer for Live Science but is now a freelancer based in Denver, Colorado, and regularly contributes to Scientific American and The Monitor, the monthly magazine of the American Psychological Association. Stephanie received a bachelor's degree in psychology from the University of South Carolina and a graduate certificate in science communication from the University of California, Santa Cruz.