Filed under Sexual selection

Menstrual music

Menstrual music

Ladies, which musical composer would you like to sleep with? Well, according to some science that just happened, your preference might be influenced by where you are in your monthly cycle. Benjamin Charlton at the University of Sussex wanted to know if Darwin was right, that music, having no survival benefit, was a target of … Continue reading

Manipulating the mouse penis bone, with science

Manipulating the mouse penis bone, with science

The girth of a mouse penis bone depends on the stiffness of the competition. That’s what Leigh Simmons and Renée Firman at the University of Western Australia found after several generations of experimental evolution in mice. Over the course of the experiment, male mice developed thicker penis bones (or bacula, if you want to be scientific about … Continue reading

Absence makes the genitalia grow weirder

Absence makes the genitalia grow weirder

Evolution loves penises. How else do you explain all the crazy penis shapes out there? Por ejemplo (slightly nsfw): the corkscrew duck penis, the spiny cat and chimp members, the sci-fi-esque spiked penis of a seed beetle, the 4-headed penis of the echidna, and, well, all of these. Why so many ways to make a sperm … Continue reading

Update to duck penis science

Update to duck penis science

Back in 2011, I posted a video about duck penis research. Sadly, that video is gone. But I replaced it with another showing how the duck penis can break through several types of materials in the shape of duck ladyparts. Check it out here, along with a link to an article posted on Slate today … Continue reading

My, what a big claw you have

My, what a big claw you have

Male fiddler crabs wave their giant claws to get the attention of females. Females prefer males that wave a lot, in line with a common theme in female choice: making the male work for it. Waving that big thing around is more than just an advertisement. The thing is heavy to lift, so the male … Continue reading

Around the interwebs: Weekly link roundup!

Around the interwebs: Weekly link roundup!

Another week, another batch of links and sciency tidbits! Tomorrow I’m leaving for vacation, so I might not be able to update much (and I’ve been pretty busy this week), so there is plenty to keep you busy here: Making sperm in the lab, little squids that make big sperm, killing sperm to stop malaria, the costs … Continue reading

Vitamin E: the lizard’s sexy antioxidant

Vitamin E: the lizard’s sexy antioxidant

Vitamin E supplements make male European green lizards smell more sexy. New research published online in the journal PLoS One, led by Gábor Herczeg, shows that vitamin E in the lizards’ diet can get into the secretions left by male lizards. When males eat more vitamin E, females will spend more time near their secretions, … Continue reading