on love and voles

Thursday, June 24th, 2004

This from Nature:

Lim’s team paired male prairie and meadow voles with a sexually receptive female of the right species. Each pair was allowed a day to get to know each other, then the males were given a fidelity test.

Each vole was allowed to wander freely between his tethered partner and a tethered stranger. Prairie voles and genetically modified meadow voles huddled close to their partner; untreated meadow voles preferred to spend time alone.

Earlier work has shown that boosting vasopressin receptor levels speeds up pair bond formation in monogamous voles. The new research shows that a similar technique can turn a promiscuous species of vole into a faithful one.


2 responses to “on love and voles”

  1. gibb says:

    What I would really get excited about is if they rendered the little bastards sterile.

  2. Maureen says:

    AW, but susan then cats would have nothing to play with….

    So, does that mean we owe a debt of gratitude to voles? Through them, we will know the manner and way to fidelity? Is it all about chemicals? Where does character come in? Do vermin [mice, voles, etc.] have character?