“Sperm competition”

Attractive guys have more sex, but release fewer sperm


 

Hey ladies looking to procreate: find yourselves an unattractive guy. Scientists at the University of Oxford have found that attractive males release fewer sperm than their less attractive counterparts. They studied how the “sperm load” in the ejaculate of species such as fowl and fish are affected by mating patterns. As you’d expect, the most attractive males mated with females more often than unattractive males. But as the frequency of ejaculation increased, the “value” of their sperm decreased. This process is known as “sperm competition”, whereby the sperm of different males compete inside the female to create offspring. By releasing fewer sperm per mating, the males can mate more often. Basically, the unattractive males have a harder time getting females to mate with them, so when they do finally land a date, they release more sperm to make the most of their breeding opportunity. So what does this mean for humans? The scientists aren’t sure yet, but they say humans have “been moulded by similar forces” of nature, so future research may reveal a similar pattern.

Science Daily


 
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