For female cheetahs in the Serengeti, the call of the wild is just too hard to resist as new research shows nearly half of their litters are made up of cubs with different fathers.
And while the serial infidelities of the females does ensure a broader genetic mix to help the survival of the endangered species, it comes at a cost, the Zoological Society of London (ZSL) said on Wednesday.
“Mating with more than one male poses a serious threat to females, increasing the risk of exposure to parasites and diseases,” said Dada Gottelli, ZSL’s lead scientist for the research.
“Females also have to travel over large distances to find new males, making them more vulnerable to predation, so infidelity is a heavy burden.”
Is it just me, or do those arguments sound like abstinence-ed for cheetahs? (I’m sick. Give me a break.)