Saturday, October 17, 2009

Isn't there an easier way

I read this with considerable curiority this morning:

Scientists create sexual tsunami

Even leaving aside the weird metaphor the headline writer chose, this is an odd article. To summarize, scientists bred a fruit fly that lacked the gene to produce a characteristic pheromone, and to their surprise found that it actually made the flies sexually irresistible to other fruit flies, including ones of the same gender. Even flies of other species were interested.

"Lacking these chemical signals eliminated barriers to mating," Prof Levine said.

This seems like a lot of trouble to get fruit flies all worked up. In the human world, we just get a couple of kegs of beer.


dogimo said...

Typical patriarchist interpretation of data and reportage of interpretation. As usual, the only factor deemed worth considering is the male's interest.

Male fruit flies become sexually indiscriminate! - hailed as a significant result! Not so much as a mention as to how female reacts.

I'm not certain the male of any species lowering its standards for sexual arousal ought to surprise anyone.

Jamie said...

You might also enjoy Dr. Tatiana's Sex Advice To All Creation: The Definitive Guide to the Evolutionary Biology of Sex by Olivia Judson.

"An uproarious and authoritative natural history in the form of letters to and answers from the preeminent sexpert in all creation, this best-selling guidebook to sex reveals when necrophilia is acceptable, how to have a virgin birth, and when to eat your lover. It also advises on more mundane matters-such as male pregnancy and the joys of a detachable penis."

And all without beer! It almost makes being human boring by comparison! :)