This deer has fangs that would make Dracula feel self-conscious. At barely 40 pounds, they look like a cross between a saber-toothed tiger and a baby deer. What's going on here? Why is this tiny deer so weird? Are they carnivores? If not, what are those fangs for? Today, Macken answers these questions, as well as many others, including:
- Why do gorillas & chimps have massive canines, if they rarely eat meat?
- How come humans have such lame canines, if we evolved to eat meat?
- What is the difference between intrasexual and intersexual selection?
- Is there a biological reason why women often gossip and men often fight? Or is that just cultural?
- What is a musk pod?
- Why is it that the perfume industry and the traditional Chinese medicine industry are united in their efforts to obliterate this animal?
- Is it OK to criticize traditional Chinese medicine?
Today we are going to talk about a wide variety of topics, from sexual selection in humans to the ethics of Westerners criticizing Chinese medicine. It is a complicated, and (compared to our usual fare) controversial show. We will focus on these topics through the lens of the Siberian musk deer, one of several species of musk deer vulnerable to extinction.