Gay animal sex

This is a video about Laysan albatrosses.

From New Scientist:

Homosexual selection: The power of same-sex liaisons

* 07 December 2009 by Kate Douglas

Gallery: Nature’s homosexual pin-ups

Editorial: Homosexuality in nature is no guide to morality

NOT long ago, the news was full of reports about two male Humboldt penguins at a zoo in Germany that adopted an egg, hatched it and reared the chick together. It seems like every time you turn around, the media spotlight has fallen on another example of same-sex liaisons in the animal kingdom.

In the past few years, the ubiquity of such behaviour has become apparent. This summer evolutionary biologists Marlene Zuk and Nathan Bailey from the University of California, Riverside, published a paper on the subject that included examples from dozens of species ranging from dung flies and woodpeckers to bison and macaques.

That is just the beginning of the story. The burning question is why same-sex behaviour would evolve at all when it runs counter to evolutionary principles. But does it? In fact there are many good reasons for same-sex sexual behaviour. What’s more, Zuk and Bailey suggest that in a species where it is common, it is an important driving force in evolution. …

Same-sex behaviour is not necessarily synonymous with same-sex preferences, which have been observed in only a handful of animals. In 2005, for example, Hans Van Gossum from the University of Antwerp in Belgium and colleagues found that damselflies kept in all-male groups subsequently preferred to court other males rather than females, though this preference could be reversed simply by housing them with females (Biological Letters, vol 1, p 268).

Neither can you necessarily infer anything about sexual orientation from same-sex behaviour. Orientation is tricky to establish because it requires information about the consistency of partner preferences over a long period of time. Examples are thin on the ground, either because they do not exist or because they have yet to be discovered. The most notable include some male bighorn sheep that have been observed to predominantly mount other males throughout their lives, and female Laysan albatrosses – more of which later.

When two female royal albatrosses at a New Zealand breeding colony embarked on a lesbian relationship, there were some raised eyebrows. But when the pair successfully incubated a chick, wildlife experts were delighted – and surprised: here.

This 24 June 2017 video from the USA is called Gay Beluga Whales Mating at Sea World.

Insect Sex Study Reveals Surprising Reasons For Bugs’ Homosexual Encounters: here.

1,500 animal species practice homosexuality: here.

See also here.

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