The strange and wonderful world of Behavioral Scientists is wrought with people interested in watching animals doink each other! Sure, it's just like anyone else, but very scientifically. In July 2001, The Animal Behavior Society (ABS) held a conference for five days in Corvallis, Oregon. The event was attended by Behavioral Scientists from around the globe, drooling at the bit to share their sexually charged observations with one another. From bug dicks (see It Sure Is A Scientific World: "Dicks of the Insect World," May 3) to Bush dogs giving rim jobs, no one spins a sexual yarn quite like a Behavioral Scientist! Check out a few of the gems below, taken directly from a single day of ABS's Symposium Speaker's Schedule, and try to keep your pulse from racing with sexual agitation!
10:30 Ptacek, title: Mating preferences for multivariate mating signals: determining the targets of sexual selection and species recognition.
11:00 Wagner, title: Search behavior and mating preferences
11:30 Greenfield, title: Phenotypic plasticity, genotype x environment interaction, and the (un)reliability of mating preferences
12:00 Lunch [Time for a cool washcloth!]
1:30 Ritchie, title: Measuring female preferences in acoustic insects
2:00 Gerhardt, title: Preference functions based on multi-dimensional acoustic features
2:30 Basolo, title: Comparative studies of mating preferences
3:00 Morris, title: Two common problems encountered in studies of female mating preference
3:30 Break [Who wouldn't need a break at this point? They're scientists--not superheroes!]
3:45 Webster, title: Using molecular markers to study female mating patterns in wild populations of birds: good news and bad news
4:15 Shuster, title: Female mate choice: When does it matter?
4:45 Sih, title: Multiple behavioral mechanisms underlying patterns of sexual selection
5:15 Conclusions and Discussion
6:27 Sexual Intercourse between Consenting ABS Members [I added that one for laffs.]
That was just the Symposium. It doesn't even mention the ABS Film Festival. Five days of non-stop sexy cinema--all devoted to animals behaving! Unfortunately, I missed this year's conference. I was home 'lubricating my microscope' instead of attending those highly regarded lectures and films. Hell, I could have learned something!