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March 10, 2007 | From Times Wire Reports
A study of spiders' copulation techniques found that males leave part of their sex organ inside females as a sort of "chastity belt" to deter rivals. "Males can reduce sperm competition and thereby increase their paternity success," Bonn University researchers wrote in the journal Behavioral Ecology. A male only has only seconds to have sex before the larger female kills him. In more than 80% of cases, the tip of the male's genital organ breaks off inside the female.
March 15, 2006 | J. Michael Kennedy, Times Staff Writer
In the final analysis, the federal watchdogs had to make a no-win choice about the bald eagles of Santa Catalina Island. The birds' eggs were still cracking because of the ravages of DDT. The chances of reproducing on their own, at least in the foreseeable future, seemed dubious at best.
September 22, 1989 | LEE MAY, Times Staff Writer
In a decision that could have far-reaching ethical, medical and legal implications, a Tennessee judge Thursday awarded custody of seven frozen embryos to a wife embroiled in a divorce case, ruling that "human life begins at conception." Circuit Court Judge W. Dale Young ruled the fertilized eggs should go to Mary Sue Davis, who wants to implant them and carry them to term--against the wishes of her estranged husband, Junior Lewis Davis. At a news conference in Titusville, Fla.
March 27, 1999
In the first known birth of its kind, a woman has had a baby using sperm retrieved from her dead husband, raising ethical questions over whether a man must give his consent to be a father. The sperm was retrieved 30 hours after the man's death and then frozen for 15 months before use. His wife, Gaby Vernoff, became pregnant in July 1998 and delivered the girl March 17 at a Los Angeles hospital.
A whodunit is quickly turning into a soap opera at the Los Angeles Zoo, where two more pregnant chimps have some explaining to do. First, Yoshiko, who had been seen with male chimp Jerrard, gave birth to a baby in January. Zookeepers hadn't even known she was pregnant. And all three male chimps of breeding age, including Jerrard, had had vasectomies.
Male prisoners have a constitutional right to procreate by means of artificial insemination, the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled Wednesday. The 2-1 decision, the first of its kind by a federal appellate court, comes in the case of William Reno Gerber, a 41-year-old third-strike convict now serving a 111-year sentence for negligently discharging a firearm, making terrorist threats and possessing a handgun as an ex-felon.
February 1, 2003 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
Mammalian sperm cells use heat to find their way to an egg, much as heat-sensing missiles seek out their targets. Eggs use chemical signals to lure sperm, but this alone cannot account for the speed of fertilization. Now scientists at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel report in the journal Nature Medicine that sperm move toward heat.
August 7, 1989 | From Associated Press
An estranged couple's fight over the fate of seven fertilized human eggs goes to court today. Junior Lewis Davis seeks to prevent his wife, Mary Sue Davis, from attempting to become pregnant with any of the eggs now that they are getting divorced. Davis says he no longer wants to have a child with her. The eggs were taken from Mrs. Davis and fertilized with Davis' sperm in an in-vitro fertilization program the couple entered six years ago in hopes of having a so-called "test-tube baby."
June 1, 2004 | Pete Thomas
GRAY whales are having a baby boom, with nearly 180 cow-calf pairs migrating from Baja California, according to a recent census taken from Palos Verdes Peninsula. That's twice as many as in the previous season, which was also productive. Federal wildlife officials made similar observations near Monterey. Not all the whales can be seen, but the counts are considered an indicative sample. Scientists say abundant food in the Bering Sea is helping the whales rebound.
October 29, 2006 | Kevin Sack, Times Staff Writer
WHEN the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court voted to legalize gay marriage in 2003, its opinion rested squarely on the argument that determining the best interests of a child "does not turn on a parent's sexual orientation or marital status." Three years later, the top court in neighboring New York also cited the welfare of children -- but took precisely the opposite stance.
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