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Sexual conflict

Analysis and Comment (11)

The sexual activity of the southern bottletail squid involves choosy females eating losers' ejaculate. Saspotato

Squid or swallow: the sexual tastes of a cephalopod

In romantic circles, reproduction is viewed as a harmonious venture between the sexes. After all, if you aim to produce the best offspring possible, wouldn’t it also be best to cooperate with your partner…
If you’re a female guppy it pays to take many mates … sort of. André "Drekas" Correia/Flickr

More sex partners means more grandkids … if you’re a guppy

Here’s some good news: having more sexual partners makes females more fertile. A recent study on Trinidadian guppies has shown that females who mate with multiple males produce more grand-offspring than…
Female wasp spiders often eat their mate straight after intercourse. Wikimedia Commons

Sticky and picky: why male orb-web spiders like heavy virgins

When it comes to selecting a mate, females are traditionally thought of as the choosy sex; males, meanwhile, aren’t thought to be particularly picky. This makes sense for many species – the sex that invests…
This is just asking for trouble. Wikimedia Commons

Sex and death … not-so-strange bedfellows

Few of us consider that having sex could result in a violent, instantaneous death. But in nature, where sex and violence are often two sides of the same coin, many animals are routinely subjected to such…
Lilting voice? No need to look on the dark side. Bisgrafic

Did Darth Vader have a low sperm count?

Few individuals in the Star Wars universe inspired more fear than the Sith Lord, Darth Vader. But beneath the dark exterior, the commander-formerly-known-as-Anakin-Skywalker might have been hiding a dark…
Evolution favours men who overestimate how attractive they are to women. What is in us

She’s just not that into you (but you probably think she is)

We all know somebody like Dick: a bloke who rates himself for no apparent reason and who optimistically reckons every woman – especially every attractive woman – is interested in him. Most of us have met…
Women rushed to change their lives in the 60s and 70s, but their progress has stalled now. Flickr/Maciek Zygmunt

Why the rush for gender equality has stalled

No one is too surprised today if a young woman becomes a doctor, lawyer, or executive. But eyebrows are raised just about as much today as in decades past if a couple features a tall woman and short man…
When is a roll in the hay worth losing your head over? Suizilla

Sexual cannibalism: a treat you can eat

Sex is often viewed as a totally harmonious interaction between a male and female with the same innate goal – to produce offspring. But it is becoming increasingly clear to biologists that the reproductive…

Research Briefs (1)