Scientists Document Monkeys Trying to Have Sex With Deer

By Kate Seamons

December 26, 2017

It was a "single anecdotal event" that surprised scientists and the internet: A male snow monkey was documented trying to have sexual relations with a sika deer in Japan. 

It turns out it wasn't so singular. A study published Dec. 11 in the Archives of Sexual Behavior establishes that "heterospecific sexual behavior" is occurring between the two species, a conclusion born out of the study of adolescent female Japanese macaques, or snow monkeys, "performing mounts and sexual solicitations" on male sika deer at Minoo in Japan.

 "The monkey-deer sexual interactions reported in our paper may reflect the early stage development of a new behavioral tradition," says co-author Noëlle Gunst-Leca.

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