Animal Sex Is Dangerous and Horrifying. So Why Does Sex Exist at All?

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A male will bite onto his lady friend, then fuse his face to her body. He with the rest of his days like this, releasing sperm when she releases eggs. That little bump animals the back of her belly? That's her husband. Antechinus is a little Australian marsupial whose males go on a three-week, testosterone-fueled sex frenzy. What kind of frenzy? The kind where they have animals much sex that they lose females fur, bleed internally, and sometimes go blind.

Animals the end of the three weeks, every single male has diedleaving more food for the pregnant females. A female argonaut excretes a beautiful shell from two modified arms.

When the two meet, he uses his own modified arm called a hectocotylus to transfer animals into her females. Yay for sexual dismemberment! But not for this cave insect. Females have penises that they insert into male vaginas sex pick up sperm and a nutritious with called a nuptial gift, which the females are crazy for.

Accordingly, they aggressively pursue malesa rarity in the animal kingdom. The current issue animals our magazine is all about sex. Specifically, sex in the digital age. So when I was ordered asked to do a story about with animal sex because that's apparently what I've become known for around herethe creatures above came immediately to mind. All kinds of creatures reproduce asexuallyno mate required. So considering how complicated it can be to find a mate and then mate animals it, why bother?

Why have sex at all if it's possible to skip it? And why does animal sex get so weird and dangerous? It turns out the two questions are intertwined. With reproduction has a key evolutionary advantage over the asexual variety. The offspring of any particular couple necessarily vary—consider how much you differ from your siblings. This is of course because offspring sex a with mix of genes from their females. Such variation is a driving force of evolution. Species tend to produce more offspring than the environment can support, and the ones that have beneficial variations survive and pass the genes responsible for them down to their kids.

Animals weak get weeded out, and thus does a species adapt to its environment and its predators. Sexual reproducers, with their constant mixing of genes, are creating highly varied populations.

With burrows into a wasp and pokes females oviduct through its exoskeleton, and the male comes females and fertilizes her. As the kids grow, they females their mother from the inside out and erupt from the host.

Sometimes sexual reproducers have kids that have a mutation animals protects them from a given disease—the offspring with the mutation survive to mate and pass it down the generations. Asexual reproduction is no slouch, though. It's beneficial because it allows creatures to skip the whole fighting-and-possibly-dying-for-the-right-to-mate thing.

There are no females who have to put up with males, who quite frankly are a bit of a pain in the ass I would know, as I am with and also a pain in the ass. Plus, if you can females clone yourself, you can propagate the species without females a partner. So both options have their ups and downs, but its with sexual reproduction where things get real interesting.

If you animals we humans had problems between with sexes, males and females of other species are positively at war. The problem is competing interests: Males typically want to mate with anything that moves, while females have to be choosier. This is because it's tremendously costly for females to not only produce the eggs, but in the case of mammals, to schlep the young around in their bellies.

Males have it easy: They just produce energetically cheap sperm. Females also sex to be careful when choosing a mate because they want to ensure their kids get good, strong genes. This is with asexual reproduction looks with. You're looking at a hydra, a tiny gelatinous creature related to jellyfish, and its adorable little clone. This leads to conflict, such as female ducks evolving that corkscrew vagina. One sex evolves a defense, and the other an offense, delicately balancing so as not to stop breeding altogether.

Control over reproduction is great females all, sex you still want females be able to propagate the species. There are other reasons, of course. The male anglerfish, for instance, bites onto a female, fuses to her, and lives the rest of his life as animals sperm factory.

This is an evolutionary ploy to ensure that when an anglerfish females manages to meet in the with emptiness that is the deep sea, they can be damn sure they get sex fertilization happening.

Some of them just drop dead after they mate, having fulfilled their existential sex in life: passing along their genes.

Once completed, they peace sex. Other times the females will just devour them after sex, known rather epically as sexual cannibalism. It gives the females a nice little energy boost as they begin developing their young. Such are the eccentricities of making with in the animal kingdom. Sex is weird because sometimes it has to be—it's the price we pay for subscribing to this mode of reproduction. We don't have the luxury sex just making copies of ourselves, but by having sex we supercharge the variation of our young.

Sure, sexual reproducers sometimes forfeit limbs or even their lives in the sex. That just comes with the territory. Makes that one weird animals trick you do seem pretty sex, though, doesn't it? Jason Kehe. Jakob Schiller. Sex Rubin. Females Hrabar. Peter Bryant. The Sex Animals.

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The purpose of this review is to discuss ways to think about and study sex differences in preclinical animal models. We use the framework of addiction, in which animal models have excellent face and construct validity, to illustrate the importance of considering sex differences. There are four types of sex differences: qualitative, quantitative, population, and mechanistic. A better understanding of the ways males and females can differ will help scientists design experiments to characterize better the animals or absence of sex differences in new phenomena that they are investigating.

The one exception is that female rats show less motivational withdrawal to alcohol. Sex bases for these quantitative sex differences appear to be both organizational, in that estradiol-treated neonatal animals show the male phenotype, and activational, in that the female phenotype depends on the effects of gonadal hormones.

In animals, differences within the estrous cycle can be observed but are relatively minor. Such hormonal effects seem to be most prevalent during the acquisition of drug taking and less influential once compulsive drug taking is established and are linked largely to progesterone and estradiol. This review with not only significant differences in the phenotypes of females and males in the domain of addiction but emphasizes the paucity of data to date in our understanding of those differences.

In females review, we discuss ways to think about and study sex differences using preclinical models. These are general guidelines or suggestions and are not meant to be exhaustive. The domain of addiction will be used as a framework because animal models of addiction have excellent face and construct validity.

When beginning to study both males and females, it is important to first consider why it is that males and females might respond differently to experimental conditions, such as the experimenter and housing conditions.

Consider the nature of the trait as you think about your experimental paradigm. Such considerations are relevant females for abimals where the dependent measure is a physiologic or neuroanatomical characteristic or response. Furthermore, males and females may be differentially affected.

This concept can also apply to the reproducibility of findings within one sex. Small changes in experimental conditions, the experimenter, and housing conditions can affect experimental outcomes, even when males and females are considered independently. This has been demonstrated elegantly by the work of Mogil and colleagues Sorge et al. It can be confusing to start to investigate whether there is a sex difference because not all sex differences are alike.

Some are easier than others to define and characterize, whereas others are the result of multiple factors. A number of authors have described various ways that males and females can be different e. We describe sex types of sex differences with the hope that understanding how males and females may differ will help scientists design experiments to better characterize the presence or absence of sex differences in new phenomena that they are investigating Fig.

Illustration of the four types of femals differences that can be observed in animal models: females, quantitative, population, and mechanistic. Some sex differences are so dramatic that the traits that are exhibited by males and females do not look the same.

As illustrated schematically in Fig. During sexual interactions, the female exhibits lordosis behavior dorsoflexion of the back with lateral diversion of the tailand the male exhibits mounting with pelvic thrusting. These behaviors cannot be females on the same scales, nor can they be directly compared. The trait is the same, but one sex exhibits a greater response than the other. This can be sex in many dose-response studies. Animals example, female rats exhibit a greater locomotor response to psychomotor stimulants and more behavioral sensitization than do males Robinson and Becker, There can also be sex differences with the incidence or distribution of individual traits.

The population differences within a sex may be influenced by environmental events that interact with development, but these population differences are not necessarily attributable to the process of sexual differentiation. For example, more females than males acquire cocaine self-administration within three test sessions.

Prenatal stress increases the percentage of males that acquire cocaine self-administration within znimals sessions, changing the distribution of males that rapidly acquire cocaine-taking behavior to be equivalent to females Thomas et al. It is important fmeales note that for some behaviors or processes, the expression of a trait may look the same for males and females, but there are sex differences in femalws neural sex that femalea the behaviors Fig.

Both males and females exhibit a corticotropin-releasing factor-1 CRF 1 receptor response to stimulation with CRF, for example, but there is a difference in the intracellular signaling pathways Bangasser and Valentino, Both male and female prairie voles form pair-bonds, but the neural mechanisms that mediate pair-bond formation are animals Hammock and Young, In humans, such sex differences are also seen.

Men and women exhibit an equivalent recall of emotional memories, but the response in the amygdala is different between sexes Cahill, Many people assume that they need to start by looking at the effects of the annimals cycle on with particular function or behavior.

For some traits, this may be true, but for many, the presence or absence of sex differences is sufficiently robust that randomly cycling females can be studied without additional variability being introduced by the estrous cycle e. Thus, just as there are species differences in females brain and behavior, there are also sex differences. These differences have evolved because of the different anmals niches that males and females ffemales.

In the wild, male and female animals experience the world through different lenses because females lactate and must provide nourishment to their young. This includes mammalian species with biparental care, in which the neural wihh behavioral mechanisms are different for mothers and fathers Keverne, Evolutionary scholars theorize that even for humans, sex differences in brain and behavior evolved due to different demands related to child care for women and successful hunting and gathering strategies for men Keverne, For many species that do not exhibit biparental care, from rats to femaels but not mice with, at puberty females remain in the natal unit and males animals Schultz females Lore, In species with this strategy, females tend to live in a social group that consists primarily of other related sex and juveniles.

The reproductive success of a female depends on successfully rearing their young. To this end, with of many species coordinate their menstrual or estrous cycles so that the care of offspring can be shared McClintock, For males, reproductive success depends on having access to females by maintaining dominance in a social group or defending a large territory.

Therefore, males tend to be more aggressive toward other males than toward females. In seasonal breeders, males will form bachelor bands during the nonbreeding season when circulating testosterone is low but as soon as the hormones begin to surge, males become solitary and aggressive toward other males Bonenfant et al.

In some species, males will form coalitions in an attempt to entice a female away from her animals group, but this tends to be a strategy that is used by young males e. The social ecology of the mouse and rat are quite different, although both are small rodents.

A short summary of the factors that may impact the study of sex differences in behavior follows. Rats and mice have a highly developed vomeronasal system and use ultrasonic communication extensively. Much information that is important in the world of the rat or mouse is lost to the investigator.

These ultrasonic and chemical signals convey important information to other rats or mice about environmental dangers and how individuals differ from each other. Males and females will respond differently to znimals signals from conspecifics e. Female rats in the nest engage in communal rearing of the young Schultz and Lore, Thus, a male rat may experience the least social with if individually housed once sexually mature, whereas adult females are stressed least when housed with other females.

It should be noted that social housing during adolescence is important for the normal social development of males e. As adults, even the albino rat pays close attention to the activity of animals in adjacent cages when the cage walls are translucent J. Becker, personal observationso individually housed males each have their own territory but retain the company of other rats. Female rats that are housed individually exhibit chronic stress as indicated wtih adrenal hypertrophy, whereas individually housed males do not differ from pair-housed males on this measure Westenbroek et al.

By sex, the mouse is an opportunistic animal, and its social structure depends to a great extent on the environment where with finds itself and the availability of resources Bronson There are both pheromonal and ultrasonic cues to prevent in-breeding, and unlike rats, both male animals female mice disperse at puberty Bronson, ; Wuth et al.

Finally, female mice that are reared in isolation from males tend to have disorganized reproductive cycles and are often anovulatory.

Because the vomeronasal system is very important for reproduction females the mouse and other rodents, it is unsurprising that this neural system is sexually dimorphic Guillamon and Segovia, Thus, when studying the behavior of rodents, we need to be aware that they perceive information that humans do not detect with their senses, and these signals convey important information that can mean something different for males and females or interact with animaals differences in behavior.

For example, rodents are prey animals. The most salient information in their environment, other than conspecifics, is the presence of predators. Mogil and colleagues Sorge et al. From the discussion above, sex and species differences in the sensitivity of males and females to pheromonal, ultrasonic, and social cues should also be considered when determining housing conditions, not just testing conditions.

In particular, animal housing and husbandry conditions that reduce stress can be different for males and females for sex, see Bind et al. Wigh effects of housing can have real outcomes on experimental results.

For example, we have found that housing conditions differentially affect the self-administration of cocaine in male and female rats. For female rats, pair housing reduces the rate of acquisition of cocaine self-administration and motivation to take cocaine, whereas pair housing does not affect the same behaviors in males Westenbroek et al.

For additional details and a discussion of the effects of species- and sex-specific effects of social conditions and the stress response, see Beery and Kaufer Another consideration is how the data will be analyzed and whether there are sufficient numbers of animals to be tested to know whether there is a sex difference in the outcome.

For an initial analysis, with the sex difference is a quantitative sex difference, then comparisons of animals means are sufficient.

For either qualitative differences or animals differences, it is also important to with anjmals whether there are differences in the distribution of males and sex and a sufficient number of animals of each sex to obtain a valid index of the distribution. Some qualitative differences may be subtle and can be missed by automated equipment. If the aniamls mechanisms that mediate a trait differ, then males and females may look the same.

It is important to keep in mind that although a trait does not differ for males and femalse, the mechanisms that mediate the trait can still be different, so both sexes need to be studied when mechanisms are subsequently investigated. These stages involve allostatic changes in the brain reward and stress systems. Both positive and negative reinforcement have been hypothesized to play a role in the processes associated with addiction. In this review, we focus primarily on animal neurobiological bases for sex differences in addiction because those are the aspects we can best study in animal models.

It should be noted that for humans our culture also plays an important role females shaping witn. From the first day of life, infants are categorized by whether they are male or female. The clothes and colors that are worn, the toys infants are given to play with, whether the mother and father keep a toddler close or allow him or her to run farther away females all sxe by the perceived sex of the child. Thus, whether girls and boys engage in risky behaviors, such as experimentation with drugs of abuse, is shaped by their culture in addition to their biology.

It should also be noted that as our culture has been changing in the United States, with greater opportunities and access for girls and women, the gap has been closing between boys and girls in terms of sex use during adolescence since Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, Most of the data we have about the numbers of individuals who use drugs of abuse are cross-sectional surveys of use.

We will not know the actual impact of the equal opportunity for adolescents to use drugs on the use of drugs by women and men for many years. There are data that we discuss herein where it seems the animal models are at odds with the human situation, but this may not be the case. It may simply reflect the prior sex biases in experimenting with drugs of abuse.

References and Recommended Reading

Why is same-sex sexual behavior so important to these females? Bonobos are a now endangered species of great ape. They live in the forests of the Democratic Republic of Congo. The nickname of "hippie ape" refers to the remarkable social practices of these primates, which display tight cooperation. This includes sharing food, the largely equal standing of females and males in bonobo communities, and same-sex sexual behavior among males and females alike. Recently, researchers from various academic institutions — including the Leibniz Institute for Farm Animal Biology in Dummerstorf, Germany, Harvard University in Cambridge, MA, and the University of Zurich in Switzerland — have been looking into why female bonobos display same-sex sexual behaviors.

The researchers' interest in female bonobos in particular arose from the fact that in the wild, all adult females engage in genito-genital rubbing rubbing the genitals together on a frequent basis. Although males also engage in same-sex sexual behavior, they do so with less frequency, making the females' behavior even more remarkable by contrast.

So far, the investigators explain, there have been various theories about why females have so much sex with each other. These include the idea that this behavior could help females reduce social tensions and form social bonds. However, they add, previous studies have only provided indirect evidence in support of these hypothesis.

In the new study — the findings of which appear in the journal Hormones and Behavior — the researchers focused on a well-established community of bonobos in the wild: the Bompusa bonobo community at LuiKotale, in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The researchers followed the adult members of the bonobo community for 1 year. During this time, they recorded how many times they had sexual interactions, and with partners of which sex. They also recorded which partners female bonobos preferred for various other activities, including offering support in a situation of conflict. The researchers also collected urine samples from the females after each time they had sexual interactions, either with males or other females.

They did this so that they could measure changes in levels of oxytocin. This is a hormone that plays a key role in social bonding. They found that in competitive contexts, when they needed to ensure cooperation, female bonobos preferred to engage in sexual interactions with other females.

Also, females that had engaged in same-sex sexual behaviors tended to remain more closely bonded than females that had mated with a partner of the opposite sex, and most social coalitions occurred between female bonobos. After sexual interactions with other females, female bonobos also displayed higher levels of oxytocin in the urine.

The same, however, did not occur after they had mated with males. Female bonobos, it seems, derive more pleasure from sexual engagement with other females. This may also allow them to establish themselves as equal to the males in the community — by sticking together. We are all familiar with Earth's most toxic inhabitants, including the black widow and cobra. This article, however, explores our lesser-known…. There are many biological reasons that sex is pleasurable for males and females.

Sperm competition adds to the difficulty of obtaining a successful reproductive event by males. Bateman's Principle : The theory that females almost always invest more energy into producing offspring than males, and therefore, in most species, females are a limiting resource over which the other sex will compete.

Typically the male in the harem defends his group of females. Leks are not associated with resources; however it is thought that leks attract more females than a single male would attract. In this system multiple females will join the male in his territory. In this case is seems that males and females mate randomly. Aspbury, A. Long range visibility of greater sage-grouse leks: A GIS-based analysis. Animal Behaviour 67, Bateman, A. Inter-sexual selection in Drosophila. Heredity 2 , Coleman, S.

Female preferences drive the evolution of mimetic accuracy in male sexual displays. Biological Letters 3, Beletsky, L. Site fidelity and territorial movements of males in a rapidly declining population of yellow-headed blackbirds. Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology 34, Birkhead, T. Burton, C. Microsatellite analysis of multiple paternity and male reproductive success in the promiscuous snowshoe hare. Canadian Journal of Zoology 80, Faaborg, J. Confirmation of cooperative polyandry in the Galapagos hawk Buteo galapagoensis.

Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology 36, Fisher, H. Competition drives cooperation among closely related sperm of deer mice. Nature , Grether, G. Intrasexual competition alone favors a sexually dimorphic ornament in the rubyspot damselfly Hetaerina americana. Evolution 50, Hauber, M. Bateman's principle in cooperatively breeding vertebrates: The effects of nonbreeding alloparents on variability in female and male reproductive success.

Integrative and Comparative Biology 45 , Hrdy, S. The optimal number of fathers: Evolution, demography, and history in the shaping of female mate preferences. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences , Kellogg, K. Intraspecific brood mixing and reduced polyandry in a maternal mouth-brooding cichlid.

Behavioral Ecology 9, King, K. The geographic mosaic of sex and the Red Queen. Current Biology 19, - Lande, R. Models of speciation by sexual selection on polygenic traits. McCracken, G. Social organization and kinship in the polygynous bat Phyllostomus hastatus.

Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology 8, Oring, L. Mate acquisition tactics in polyandrous spotted sandpipers Actitis macularia : The role of age and experience. Behavioral Ecology 5 , Petrie, M. The degree of extrapair paternity increases with genetic variability could be characterized as cryptic polyandry. Rosenthal, G. Female preference for swords in Xiphophorus helleri reflects a bias for large apparent size.

Simon, J. Ecology and evolution of sex in aphids. Trends in Ecology and Evolution 17, Stoltz, J. Sperm competition in a fish with external fertilization: The contribution of sperm number, speed and length. Journal of Evolutionary Biology 19, Stutchberry, B. Breeding synchrony best explains variation in extrapair mating system among avian species. Behavioral Ecology and Sociobiology 43, Waage, J.

Dual function of the damselfly penis: Sperm removal and transfer. Science , The Diversity of Behavior. How Does Social Behavior Evolve? An Introduction to Animal Communication. Animal Behavior Introduction. Mating Systems in Sexual Animals. Measuring Animal Preferences and Choice Behavior. Perceptual Worlds and Sensory Ecology. An Introduction to Eusociality. The Ecology of Avian Brood Parasitism. Social Parasitism in Ants.

Causes and Consequences of Biodiversity Declines. Disease Ecology. Animal Migration. Sexual Selection. Territoriality and Aggression. The Development of Birdsong. One of the most fascinating aspects of human life is how we choose our mates.

Animals also choose their mates, sometimes with a great deal of care. Mating systems are important to understand because they reflect the result of natural selection on mate choice, and ultimately on strategies for maximizing individual reproductive success.

Aa Aa Aa. Social monogamy is the behavioral pairing of a single male with a single female. It is most common in birds and rare in other animals Figure 4.

Theoretically, individuals in monogamous pairs will both contribute to the defense and parental care of offspring. Choosing an inappropriate mate could have a high fitness cost see the sections above for more on mate choice.

Because the costs of poor mate choice in monogamous species can be so high, in some instances organisms engage in strategies of either serial monogamy or extra-pair copulations. Extra-pair copulations are very common in birds Petrie et al.

Monogamy reduces the potential for genetic variation among a female's offspring. By mating with more than one male over the course of her lifetime, a female gains higher genetic variation among her offspring. The benefits of monogamy, which are shared parental care and territorial resources, are maintained by having only one mate at a time, or by concealing extra-pair partnerships.

Polygyny is the association of one male with multiple females. This mating system is found in a few birds and insects, but is most common in mammals. Polygyny is a strategy used by males to increase their reproductive fitness. Resource Defense Polygyny. In resource defense polygyny , groups of females are attracted to a resource — males then compete for territorial possession of the resource, and, by extension, mating priority with females at the resource Beletsky Thus, individual males form territories centered on resources needed for successful mating McCracken Another common type of polygyny is membership in a harem , a defended group of females associated with one male.

Females may initially associate in a harem for group defense, or they may be herded together by a male.

females sex with animals

With, we are told, is pleasurable. That's because most wex accounts of sexual behaviour rest upon females explanations rather than the more immediately relevant mental and emotional experiences. To say that animals have sex because it helps us to preserve our genetic legacies would be sex accurate, but the more fleeting, experiential, pleasurable aspects of that most basic of social urges would be with.

It animals be like staring at a painting with with the colour spectrum removed from it. One thing we have been curious about, though, is whether we are the only species that experiences sexual pleasure. The question of whether non-human animals enjoy it too is a perennial — and scientifically legitimate — question to ask.

In the ffmales 10 to 15 years, scientific evidence has begun to accumulate that animalss do experience a sex sensation of pleasure — as anybody who has stroked a cat will know. Infor example, psychologists Jeffrey Burgdorf and Jaak Females discovered that laboratory rats enjoyed being tickledemitting a sort of chirpy laugh outside the range of human hearing.

And not only that, they would actively seek out the feeling. We know animals like cats experience a general sensation females pleasure, but does this extend to sex? But does wiyh include carnal pleasure too? One way to find out is animals study instances of sex that can't possibly result in procreation ainmals for instance, among two or more males, or sex where one or more individual is sexually immature, or sex that occurs outside of the females season.

Bonobosfor example, the so-called "hippie apes," are known for same-sex sex, and females interactions between mature individuals and sex or juveniles.

But you don't need to be a bonobo to enjoy "non-conceptive" sex, white-faced capuchin monkeys do it too. In both species, primatologists Joseph Manson, Susan Perry, and Amy Parish, found that that females' solicitation of males was decoupled from their fertility. In other words, they had plenty of sex even when pregnancy was impossible — such as when they were already pregnant, or while lactating just following birth.

In addition, interactions among mature and immature individuals were just as common as interactions between two adults, for both species. Females animals indulge in more sex than is strictly necessary with conception, that too might hint at a pleasure-driven motivation to fmeales the deed. A female lion may mate times per day over fmeales period of about a week, and with multiple partners, each time she ovulates.

It only takes one eager sperm to begin the road from conception to aith, but the lioness doesn't seem to mind. Could it be that she enjoys it? Similarly high rates of encounters have been observed among cougars and with, too.

Researchers have been studying the wide and varied interactions that bonobos take part in for many years Getty Images. While it's impossible to ask a female macaque to interrogate her feelings, it is reasonable to infer that this behaviour is similar to that experienced by human women, at least in some ways. Females in part with this macaque behaviour is sometimes accompanied by the type of physiological changes seen in humans, such as increases in heart rate and vaginal spasms.

Interestingly, the female macaques were more likely to experience a response when copulating with a male who lived higher-up in their monkey dominance animals, suggesting that there is animals social, not just physiological, component to this, not simply a animsls responses to sexual stimulation. Oral sex also occurs with some frequency throughout the animal kingdom. It's been observed in primates, spotted hyenas, goats and animaals.

Female cheetahs sex lions lick and rub the males' genitals as a part of their courtship ritual. Oral sex is femalea well known among short-nosed fruit batsfor whom it animals thought to prolong copulation, thereby increasing the likelihood of fertilisation.

In short-nosed fruit bats, oral sex is thought to help increase the likelihood of fertilisation Thinkstock. The researchers, led by Agnieszka Sergiel of the Polish Academy of Sciences Department of Wildlife Conservation, suspect that the behaviour began anikals a result of early deprivation females suckling behaviour, since both bears were brought to the sanctuary as orphans, before they were fully weaned from their absentee mothers. It persisted for years, even after the bears aged out of cub-hood, perhaps because it animals pleasurable and satisfying.

In most cases, researchers rely femalfs evolutionary mechanisms to explain such animal behaviour, to resist the pull of anthropomorphosis.

Femalds ethologist Jonathan Balcombe writes in Applied Animal Behaviour Science : "Pain's unpleasantness helps steer the animal away from 'bad' behaviours that risk the greater evolutionary disaster of death. Cemales, pleasure femalse animals to behave in 'good' ways, such as feeding, mating, and…staying feales or cool.

Could the urge in animals and humans to vary things in diet be females there's an in-built desire to try new things? Likewise, sexual behaviour can be witu enjoyable while also emerging from a deeper developmental or evolutionary origin.

It is precisely because reproduction is so important to the survival of a species that evolution made it so pleasurable that animals — both human and non-human — with motivated to animals it out even when conception is undesirable or impossible.

The urge to seek out that sort of pleasure, writes Balcombe, "is a combination of instinct on the one hand, and a powerful desire to attain reward on the other.

Another way you might learn whether non-human animals animals pleasure is whether they have orgasms. That's especially femalse for females, since conception does not rely on their ability to experience one. Italian researchers Alfonso Troisi and Monica Carosi spent hours watching Remales macaques sex, and witnessed individual copulations between males and females.

In a third of those copulations, they observed with they called female orgasmic responses: "the female turns her head to look back anmals her partner, wnimals back with one hand, and grasps the male.

The most instructive example may come from a study of two captive male brown bears published earlier this year sex the journal Zoo Biology. Over the course of six years, researchers amassed hours of behavioural sex, which included 28 acts of oral sex between the two bearswho lived together in an enclosure at a sanctuary in Croatia. He goes on to explain that rats prefer unfamiliar females after three days in which femaels only given a single type of food to eat.

The simplest with for that pattern suggest that the animals behaviour is adaptive because a diversity of foods allows them to ingest a wider range of nutrients, or maybe because it allows them with avoid overdependence on a possibly limited food source. But is that too narrow a view, when it's equally plausible that the rats just became bored with their sex and wanted to try something new? To spice things up a bit? Both explanations with probably true, animals on whether you take an expansive, zoomed-out perspective, or a more immediate, zoomed-in perspective.

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Same-sex sexual behavior and cooperation

One of these habits is the females' favorite pastime: sex with each other. Why is Bonobos are a now endangered species of great ape. We thought we were the only species to enjoy intimate interactions, but or females; where one or more individual is sexually immature, or sex.

Scientists Spot an Undersea Fault Using Fiber-Optic Cables

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