Findings — From the April 2016 issue

Findings

Primatologists described an episode among Bornean orangutans (Pongo pygmaeus wurmbii) wherein Ekko, a male, sexually inspected Sidony, an old female, then changed his mind and began to mate with Kondor, a young female, who broke off sex in order to attack Sidony, in which effort she was assisted by Ekko until Guapo, another male, chased off Ekko and, amid further attacks by Kondor, mated with Sidony, who later died. East Baltimore teens who live in fear of community-level violence are 40 percent more likely to have sex if they are female and 50 percent less likely if they are male. Colorado high schoolers who tan indoors are 5.8 times more likely than their non-tanning peers to have used cocaine, 12.6 times more likely to have used heroin, 10.1 times more likely to have used meth, and 13.9 times more likely to have used steroids. White male urban high schoolers in the United States were twice as likely as their black peers to have consumed alcohol or used drugs before their most recent sexual intercourse with another man. Researchers found that incubating gauze in a mother’s vagina for an hour before a caesarean section and then swabbing her newborn in the mouth, on the face, and on the body colonizes the baby with some of the microbes typically acquired through vaginal birth. “When my own child was born by unplanned C-section,” said the study’s leader, “we took matters into our own hands.” In Italy, independent surgical specialists deemed the faces of 88 percent of transgender women who had undergone facial feminization surgery to be “very much improved.” Men fixate on the hips when peering at a naked woman through a peephole. Doctors described pre-ejaculatory illness syndrome, in which a man approaching orgasm loses muscle strength and senses his impending death. A Berlin study of pedophiliac male adolescents noted masturbarche and ejacularche consistent with the general population. Public places are the most popular venue for autistic children to elope. The stringent gender roles of penguin parents ill equip them to cope with climate change.

The camouflage of plover eggs and of nightjar plumage deceives banded mongooses, vervet monkeys, and children. Spanish zoologists warned parents against “leaving children unattended in carnivore zones” and noted that no attacks by brown bears in the Cantabrian Mountains were attributable to “abusive or predatory behaviors on the part of bears.” Nearly half the tiger widows in the Sundarbans suffer from mental illness, and 11 percent were married to crab catchers. Thailand’s Tiger Temple was implicated in the black-market sale of tiger parts. Chinese pain medicine purchased in Australia was found to contain traces of snow leopard. Seoul aquarium officials anticipated the regurgitation, by a female sand tiger shark, of a male banded houndshark. A daddy longlegs preserved in amber 99 million years ago was found to have an erection. Despite global warming, the pika will persist at the Great Sand Dunes and Craters of the Moon. One of four remaining Yangtze giant softshell turtles died. A new species of tarantula was named for Johnny Cash. A new species of terrestrial leech was named for Amy Tan. A rabbit brain was frozen and thawed without destroying its memories. India’s extinct pink-headed duck was found to have derived its coloring from carotenoids. India considered whether to provide medical training to its quacks.

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