The war between the sexes and the endless conflicts that result from that are a common theme in behavioral and evolutionary research and have been addressed several times here too. As we know very well, even from examples in our own species, males are usually not very good parents, being more interested in producing as many descendants as possible with little effort. Females, on the other hand, due to their great investment on eggs and usually other resources for the offspring are much more selective and will not accept any male to mate with them. One of the most common solutions for males to resolve this sexual conflict is by forced copulation, or rape as it is called when it happens in our own species. Sometimes this forced copulation is extreme, with males heavily injuring females in order to make them surrender.
Photos show sea turtles during their violent mating season in Great Barrier Reef
Turtle sex skewed by rising temperatures : Research Highlights
Tortoises reach sexual maturity between 10 and 20 years old, when their carapace, or upper shell, reaches 6 to 8 inches long. They're polygamous, mating with many partners. Dominant males mate more often than less aggressive males. The female tortoise is able to store sperm in her cloaca, fertilizing her eggs for up to four years after copulation. The male tortoise is most aggressive during mating season. When another male is encountered, he bobs his head in warning, stands tall and attacks.
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