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A "sexual arms race" is the phrase most often used to describe duck genitalia, and it's not hard to see why.
Male ducks have corkscrew penises.
Male muscovy ducks, for example, have corkscrew-shaped penises that spring out from their body in less than half a second and are 20cm long when erect. Other species' length varies from 1.5 to 40cm.
Some ducks also have barbs on their penises to scrub away competing sperm.
They twist in the opposite direction to the male duck's penis. But, crucially, they have dead ends they can try to send the males down if they don't want to have their ducklings. Male ducks are notorious for attempting "forced copulation" with females. So females seem to have evolved vaginas that make it hard for a male duck to actually inseminate them, if they don't want it to, by forcing it towards the dead ends.
Of course, the male ducks haven't taken this lying down. The more forced copulation a duck engages in, the longer the males' penises tend to be, according to a 2010 study in Proceedings of the Royal Society B.
In fact, male ducks grow a new penis every year (yes, you read that right). Which means they can vary the length depending on that year's competition.
But the females seem to be winning. Most times male ducks force themselves on females, it doesn't result in fertilisation. Only 3% of duck inseminations come from forced copulation.
When a female does want to mate with a male, she will contract and relax internal muscles that scientists think help make sex easier.
(HAIFA, ISRAEL) Wildfires tore across central and northern Israel on Thursday, forcing tens of thousands of residents to flee the city of Haifa, as leaders blamed arsonists for some of the blazes and branded them terrorists.
Television pictures showed a wall of flames raging through central neighborhoods of Israel's third largest city.
Firefighters dowsed a petrol station with water as the blaze edged closer.
The fires have been burning in multiple locations for the past three days but intensified on Thursday, fueled by unseasonably dry weather and strong easterly winds.
"Every fire that was caused by arson, or incitement to arson, is terrorism by all accounts. And we will treat it as such," Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told reporters gathered in Haifa. "Whoever tries to burn parts of Israel will be punished for it severely."
Internal Security Minister Gilad Erdan referred to "arson terrorism" and said there had been a small number of arrests, providing no other details.
"It's likely that where it was arson, it goes in the direction of nationalistic," Police Chief Roni Alsheich told reporters, without going into further detail.
With fires burning in the forests west of Jerusalem, around Haifa, on central and northern hilltops and in parts of the Israeli-occupied West Bank, the government sought assistance from neighboring countries to tackle the conflagration.
Greece, Cyprus, Croatia, Turkey and Russia offered help, with several aircraft already joining efforts to quell the blaze, dropping fire-retardant material to try to douse the heaviest fires and stem their spread.
Netanyahu said he had asked for a "Super Tanker" fire fighting aircraft to be sent from the United States.
The Palestinian Authority had offered assistance as well, he said.
A thick haze of smoke hung over Haifa, which rises up from the Mediterranean Sea overlooking a large port. Schools and universities were evacuated, and two nearby prisons transferred inmates to other jails, a prisons service spokesman said. Patients were moved out of a geriatric hospital.
A controversial 'pick-up artist' has allegedly admitted committing what 'could be considered rape' by having sex with two girls he had to pin down after they resisted penetration and repeatedly said 'no'.
Daryush Valizadeh, who calls himself Roosh V, allegedly said he had to 'use some muscle' to hold one of the girls down so she would 'stop moving' in a deleted blog post titled 'When No Means Yes'.
The founder of self-styled men's advocacy group Return of Kings, who has called for rape to be legalised on private property, said he would be 'in trouble' if a video emerged of either incident.
'I've had two experiences which, if you remove all context, could be considered rape,' he allegedly wrote in a blog post on RooshV.com on 18 June 2010.
'Two separate girls, completely naked, on their backs resisting penetration for the first time. They squirmed around and kept repeating 'no' even though were moaning, kissing, and squeezing.
'If there was an edited video shot of what happened those nights I'd be in trouble if either girl wanted to screw me.'
The 36-year-old American claimed that he slept with both 'girls' many times after the incidents.
The paragraph discussing the alleged 'rapes' has been deleted from the live version of the post published on Mr Valizadeh's blog.
The deleted segment can only be viewed via a cached webpage.
In the post he went on to say that when women say 'no', they do not always mean it as it 'depends on context'.
''No' when you try to take off her panties means… 'Don't give up now!' he wrote.
''No' when she's naked and you try to put it in means… 'Yes I can't wait to have your c*** inside me.''
Mr Valizadeh, from Maryland, said he would be 'reluctant' to charge a man with rape if the woman was completely naked until saying no.
'For every rape accusation I'd want to know at what stage of undress the girl was at before the supposed rape happened,' he wrote.
'If she was completely naked until saying no, and got there voluntarily, then I'd be reluctant to charge the man with rape unless there were signs of violence.'
The 36-year-old has 15 self-published books, many of which have been widely condemned as 'rape guides' by media, residents and politicians who live in the countries he is writing about.
He regularly attacks women on his Twitter account and also runs a YouTube channel that has 19,000 subscribers.
His website Return of Kings publishes articles written by Mr Valizadeh and a 'small but vocal' collection of men who hope to bring an end to America's 'politically-correct society that allows women to assert superiority and control over men'.
The 'pro-rape pick-up artist' was recently forced to cancel a series of events in the UK after claiming he could no longer guarantee the safety of those who wanted to attend.
Mr Valizadeh had announced events for 'heterosexual men only' across the UK in February.
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