11 May 2008

Cat pee and Macho Mouse


Quite understandably mice are known to be scared by cat odour - if can you smell animal that will make a light meal out of you then it is best to make yourself scarce! However cat odour also seems to act like an aphrodisiac too according to a new study. Apparently the smell makes male mice more macho, helping lure in females.

Unsurprisingly, past studies had found that cat odour typically causes mice to panic or flee. But also it could help male mice lure in females. Chinese researchers exposed mice to cat pee for eight weeks. Unexpectedly, it lead to cowering mice, instead, researchers found it led to aggressive males. These were more than twice as likely fight with other mice than rodents exposed to rabbit urine for the same amount of time. And such combative males smelled delectable to females. When presented with male pee, females that were in heat spent more time exposed to rabbit urine

Before, it was generally believed that the presence of predators always had a negative effect on their prey, "but our findings show that presence of low or moderate predation may be positive to prey," said researcher Jian-Xu Zhang, a pheromone researcher at the Institute of Zoology of the Chinese Academy of Sciences in Beijing. Female mice like aggressive males, and rodents constantly exposed to cat pee may seem like strong males that can survive the constant threat of predators, the researchers suggested. These findings could help improve life for animals in captivity, Zhang said. Zoos could enrich the environments of animals with just a whiff of their predators to stimulate them.


Hmm make of this what you will....


8 comments:

CherryPie said...

What an interesting concept, I wonder what made them think of doing such a study!!!

Sean Jeating said...

Now I start understanding why Tom Jones would be called 'Tiger'.

Lil Jimmy said...

What a pisser.

Nunyaa said...

Glad I'm not a mouse, cats pee stinks. Be a bit like when a woman walks past or a man for that matter and you notice when they smell good, do you find yourself looking for the source? You know, like a nice perfume,aftershave or just that manly smell and I'm not talking about the dreaded sweaty armpits either LOL.

jams o donnell said...

It beats me Cherie. But then that's why I didn't pursue a career in science (that and the fact I was a lazy sod who only got a "Desmond" degree!)

Hmm Sean I wonder if he pees on stage!

A pisser indeed James!

Gah it does, doesn't it Nunyaa. I must admit the same holds for women too. I am sure we do emit some potent pheromones

ELASTICWAISTBANDLADY said...

We can finally solve all the wussification problems plaguing American men with one fell swoop....or one fell piss...

Brilliant.

ELASTICWAISTBANDLADY said...

Who should donate the pee though? Hmmmm, IRS agents? Pro-wrestlers? Proctologists?

jams o donnell said...

I can see it now, Be Macho with a Golden Shower! Surely the donors should exclusively be acountants!