Earlier this week, we found out that smart women scare men (some, not all), and now we’re finding out that males who catcall, mansplain and behave like knuckle-dragging Neanderthals may really just be overcompensating for small balls and a lack of sperm.
That’s not just some feminist wet dream – science is behind this one.
A new study finds that monkeys with louder calls also have smaller testes and produce less sperm.
“In evolutionary terms, all males strive to have as many offspring as they can, but when it comes to reproduction you can’t have everything,” said lead researcher Jacob Dunn of the University of Cambridge’s Division of Biological Anthropology.
“When males invest in large bodies, bright colors, or weaponry such as horns or long canines, they are unable to also invest in reproductive traits,” Dunn added.
More studies are needed to prove Men’s Rights Activists suffer Small Ball Syndrome (all unscientific theories point to this conclusion), however this is the first study to find a correlation between “vocal investment and sperm production,” Dunn said.
Researchers studied Howler monkeys. The species ranks as one of the loudest on earth, produce roars that can be as far as heard three miles away, and they have vocal cords three times longer than a human’s.
Not unlike some human males, they yell until a female shows up. (Think happy hour at your local sports bar.) #NotAllMenInSportsBars
Howler monkeys who live in groups with other males tend to have smaller vocal organs and bigger testes, suggesting a “battle for reproduction geared more toward ‘sperm competition.'” In male howler monkeys living on their own among females in a – actual quote – “harem” social model, the opposite tended to be true.
“It may be that investment in developing a large vocal organ and roaring is so costly that there is simply not enough energy left to invest in testes,” Dunn said. “Alternatively, using a large vocal organ for roaring may be so effective at deterring rival males that there is no need to invest in large testes.”
The study was published Wednesday in the journal Current Biology.