Female Dolphins Have Working Clitoris Similar to Humans, Finds Study

Female Dolphins Have Working Clitoris Similar to Humans, Finds Study


Bottlenose Dolphins are aquatic mammals that indulge in sexual activities quite frequently. Sex for Bottlenose Dolphins can take place multiple times a day, and works as a method of establishing and maintaining social bonds. However, according to new research, sexual activities could be equally pleasurable for female Dolphins, thanks to the presence of clitoris. A new study has established that female dolphins, much like their female human counterparts, have clitoris in their reproductive anatomy which is the primary source of sexual pleasure for aquatic mammals. The study published in the Current Biology journal on Monday was authored by scientists from Mount Holyoke College, University of Florida, and Texas A&M University. According to Phys.Org, the first author of the study Patricia Brennan, an assistant professor of biological sciences at Mount Holyoke College, said in a press statement, “The dolphin clitoris has many features to suggest that it functions to provide pleasure to females.”

For their study, researchers studied clitorises from 11 females that had died naturally. They examined the anatomy of female dolphins for the presence, shape, and configuration of erectile bodies with the help of a micro CT scanner. The study also took into consideration the construction of nerve fibers through these tissues. Their analysis of the sexual reproductive anatomy supported the notion of a working clitoris in dolphins. Brennan said, “Just like the human clitoris, the dolphin clitoris has large areas of erectile tissue that fill up with blood.”

Although researchers mentioned that determining a sexual pleasure response in animals not amenable to neurobehavioral examination is difficult, their investigation of the clitoris may elucidate evidence of its sexual functionality. Brennan mentioned, “Since the entire pelvis of dolphins is so different to humans, it was surprising to see how similar the shapes were. Also, the size of the nerves in the clitoris body was very surprising. Some were larger than half a millimeter in diameter.”

The research showed that the clitoris body of female dolphins, as large as the size of an AA battery, contains large nerves and many free nerve endings underneath the skin, which is much thinner than in the adjacent skin. The study also found genital cells in dolphins much like those previously described in the human clitoris and penis tip, which are known to be primary erogenous spots.

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