Sperm, Penis & Origin of Maleness

male-spermSperm carry half the genes needed for human life. In this hour of Radiolab, some basic questions and profound thoughts about reproduction. (created in 2008)

To begin: why so many sperm? We turn to the animal kingdom for answers, which lands us on a tour of sperm battles in ducks, flying pig sperm, and promiscuous whippoorwills. Next, we ponder fatherhood, and wonder…in a world where sperm can be frozen and kept for all eternity…what the future holds for men. We end quietly, in a stark sonic space with a widow struggling to keep some essence of her husband alive.

GUESTS: Tim Birkhead, Matthew Cobb, Joanna Ellington, Nell Greenfieldboyce, Steve Jones, Kathleen LaBounty and Ari Daniel

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