Otter penises are shrinking thanks to pollution, and you should definitely freak out, because the trend might affect humans too. The connection requires further investigation, but the study notes that humans and animals are exposed to many of the same chemicals on a daily basis.
A new study from the Cardiff University Otter Project and the Chemicals, Health and Environmental Monitoring Trust (CHEM) found that otter penis bones are getting smaller. What researchers haven't yet determined is if endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs) are to blame. Otters have different reproductive physiognomy, but EDCs can also lead to human babies with undescended testicles, sex organ deformities and low sperm count.
According to Dr Eleanor Kean from the Cardiff University, the otter is a very good indicator of the health of the environment in the UK, and in the 1970s, the presence of pollutants caused a giant crash in the aquatic animal's population. Many of these chemicals have been banned, but others still exist and aren't monitored. Too bad for otters. It's an alarming find, but you can rest a little easier knowing you already have a penis. [Daily Mail]
Picture: Shutterstock/S.Cooper Digital