Scientists Hope Tiny Asexual Animals Can Teach Us Why Sex Works

Sex is how most animals reproduce, so you might wonder why some scientists are using a tiny asexual animal to study it. In an article published last winter at Quanta, Emily Singer explains that the way bdelloid rotifers manage their genes has scientists asking what the term “sex” really means. » 5/29/15 11:41am Friday 11:41am

2015's Top New Species Include Two Animals with Cool Breeding Habits


Let’s hear it for newly-discovered species with interesting sex lives! A pufferfish that builds complex circular spawning nests and a frog that gives birth directly to live tadpoles have been picked as two of the the International Institute for Species Exploration’s “top 10” new species of 2015.
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5 Animal Con Artists That Use Trickery To Get Sex

Humans use all kinds of gimmicks to win over mates — but you’d think that in nature, it would be all about honest competition. The biggest antlers, the brightest feathers, the most beautiful song, the most perfect displays – each signals the owner’s desirability as a mate. But here are five animals (and one plant)… » 5/20/15 3:34pm 5/20/15 3:34pm

Climbers Helped a Zoo Make Sure Its Orangutan Habitat Is Escape-Proof

The Kansas City Zoo didn’t have the best track record when it came to penning-in its primates—two gorillas got out in 2012 and two chimpanzees ran away in 2014 (I assume they all were brought back?). So when building a new orangutan habitat, the zoo brought in some experts to test the sheer rock walls for… » 5/15/15 7:40pm 5/15/15 7:40pm

Three Things You Probably Didn't Know About Crab Lice

Crab lice (Pthirus pubis) aren’t crabs at all—they’re parasitic insects that feed exclusively on human blood, and their bites can cause intense itching in their hosts. Often, this itching happens in the pubic area, which is why they’re also known as “pubic lice”—which, it turns out, is actually a misnomer. » 5/15/15 7:25pm 5/15/15 7:25pm

How Can I Get This Horse-Powered Garbage Truck To My Neighborhood?

I had just decided that the sanitation trucks which come rumbling down my street at dawn—spewing diesel, making my house shudder, flinging the occasional recycling bin across the street with their robot arms—are a necessary nuisance for a city dweller. Until I saw this trash collection service that uses horse-drawn… » 5/13/15 3:16pm 5/13/15 3:16pm