Penis size matters to female golden moles

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Among Hottentot golden moles, penis size, it seems, does matter to the female of the species.


Female Hottentot golden moles use the size of male golden moles’ penises as a guide to their suitability as a mate, scientists have discovered.

A long penis makes a male mole more attractive and raises his chances of fathering offspring.

That suggests that penis size is a sexually selected trait in this species.

Scientists have published details of the discovery in the journal Mammalian Biology.

Golden moles are a group of small, blind, highly specialised mammals endemic to sub-Saharan Africa.

They live underground in networks of specially dug tunnels, feeding on earthworms and the larvae and grubs of invertebrates such as insects.

“Golden moles are ideally suited to their ecosystem, they are cylindrical in body shape, have a pointed leathery nose shield that they use to push through the clay soil and two modified forepaws that resemble picks,” said Prof Nigel Bennett of the University of Pretoria, South Africa, who conducted the study with Ms Tarryn Retief and Dr Bill Bateman of the same institution.

Though they appear similar, golden moles are not close relatives of true moles. They are more closely related to tenrecs, small insectivorous mammals.

The Hottentot golden mole (Amblysomus hottentotus) lives in South Africa, Swaziland and possibly Lesotho.

Written By: Matt Walker
continue to source article at bbc.co.uk

6 COMMENTS

  1. I wonder what Katy Waldman would say about this??? She is the author of the article posted (ironically) next to this one on the homepage of the site. She should, I would think, have just as strong an opinion about this as she does males selecting for female traits.

  2. In reply to #1 by crookedshoes:

    I wonder what Katy Waldman would say about this??? She is the author of the article posted (ironically) next to this one on the homepage of the site. She should, I would think, have just as strong an opinion about this as she does males selecting for female traits.

    I guess rape now makes sense too from an evolutionary perspective.

  3. I am sorry, I must be daft, I do not get the connection or what you are driving at.

    In reply to #2 by joost:

    In reply to #1 by crookedshoes:

    I wonder what Katy Waldman would say about this??? She is the author of the article posted (ironically) next to this one on the homepage of the site. She should, I would think, have just as strong an opinion about this as she does males selecting for female traits.

    I guess rape now makes sense too from an evolutionary perspective.

  4. In reply to #1 by crookedshoes:

    I wonder what Katy Waldman would say about this??? She is the author of the article posted (ironically) next to this one on the homepage of the site. She should, I would think, have just as strong an opinion about this as she does males selecting for female traits.

    Except in this case a clear preference has been seen whereas in the one Katy Weldman was talking about wasn’t even close to what had been found just mere speculation. Plus we haven’t waded through hundreds of other pieces of research on the goldon mole and his penis where the researchers have introduced speculative male preferenced sexual selection hypotheses unsupported by evidence before we got to it.

    Think that might be the difference you’re missing.

  5. In reply to #3 by crookedshoes:

    I am sorry, I must be daft, I do not get the connection or what you are driving at.

    These studies suggest that men and women choose their mates based on certain physical traits so I suspect that leaves out a good portion of the population that won’t “get any action” unless they undergo surgery or take matters into their own hands (in order to pass on their genes), so to speak.

    More realistically, though, the not-so-attractive men and women usually just settle for each other and probably cheat with more attractive people via sex-for-money whenever they can. In short, there are compensations for looks… like money. That always seems to attract the honeys.

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