Originally published on Advocate.com February 27 2007 12:00 AM ET
koalas enjoy lesbian romps, rejecting male suitors and
attempting to mate with each other, sometimes up to five at
a time, according to researchers.
eucalyptus-eating wombat-like creatures seem to develop this
tendency for gay orgies when they are in captivity. In the
wild, they appear to remain heterosexual. Scientists
monitoring the marsupials with digital cameras counted
three gay interactions for every straight one.
rejected the advances of males that were in their
enclosures, only to become willing participants in
homosexual encounters immediately after," say the
occasions more than one pair of females shared the same
pole, and multiple females mounted each other
simultaneously. At least one multiple encounter
involved five female koalas.
One theory put
forward by the researchers is that the females do it to
attract males; another is that it is simply hormonal or that
it is a stress reliever.
the University of Queensland studied 130 koalas in
captivity and plan to publish their results in the journal
Applied Animal Behaviour Science.
"Our aim was to
determine the extent of differences in the homosexual
and heterosexual behavior of female koalas and thereby to
determine the purpose of female homosexual behavior in
the koala," say the researchers. "Wild koalas brought
into captivity clearly display homosexual behavior on
a regular basis. A total of 15 heterosexual and 43
homosexual interactions were recorded in separate animals.
Homosexual behavior was restricted to females only.
Heterosexual encounters were typically twice as long
as homosexual encounters." (Gay.com/U.K.)