The diverse way in which nonhuman animals (animals) live is fascinating and we're constantly learning more and more about interesting patterns of behavior. One such recent discovery centers on the mating habits of marsupial mice, who aren't really mice at all. Rather, they are members of the marsupial Family Dasyuridae who are native to Australia and New Guinea.

A recent study by Diana Fisher of the University of Queensland summarized here reports on "suicidal sex" (known as semelparity) by male marsupial mice. The abstract for the original research paper published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences can be seen here.

The story about these small mammals is very interesting. It turns out that females are highly promiscuous and this generates intense competition among makes. Breeding occurs when the food supply, insects, is at its highest. And, because breeding only happens once a year, it pays off for males to put everything into sperm production and hope for the best. 

I'm not sure what lessons we humans can learn from the mating habits of these small marsupials but it's clear that male marsupial mice are very serious about leaving future progeny and are willing to die for the opportunity to do so.

Please stay tuned for more on the fascinating world of other animals.

Recent Posts in Animal Emotions

Animal "Euthanasia" Is Often Slaughter: Consider Kangaroos

KIlling baby kangaroos to learn how to kill them "humanely" isn't euthanasia

Cats: Owners Say Let Them be Predators and Kill Wildlife

A new study shows people are okay with free-running cats killing wildlife

Your Brain and Health in Nature: Rewilding Is Good For Us

Two studies show how walking in nature changes the brain and the value of trees

Why Science Does Not Need Female or Male Mice

A New York Times editorial “Why Science Needs Female Mice” needs close scrutiny

Dogs' Noses Know More Than Doctors About Cancer Detection

Dogs are highly accurate sniffing out various diseases and outperform humans

A Tale of Two Brains: Are Two Really Better than One?

A recent study of brain-melding raises many important questions about ethics