Baboons in Bloom

Its always fun to visit the zoo during mating season :)

Baboons are one of the few creatures that show obvious external signs to signal reproductive fertility. When she is ready to mate, her entire bum swells bright red and she presents it to the male baboon for close inspection. Male baboons in turn use the size of the sexual swelling to determine the female's reproductive capability. In one study, females with the largest bottoms reached puberty the earliest and gave birth to more offspring. The same study noted that the males fought more aggressively over females with larger swellings.

The swelling is so pronounced that a female can gain up to 14 percent of her body weight during ovulation. Swelling also hampers movement and makes her more vulnerable to infection.

For #MonkeyMonday c/o +Alex Lapidus and +Sandy Schepis
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