Love and desire are unpredictable beasts, with every romantic encounter carrying the capacity for the strongest of passions and the deepest of betrayals. We are reminded of this today with the story of Jeremy, the cucked virgin snail.
Per NPR, Jeremy’s rare problem was identified back in November:
His shell swirls counterclockwise and his sex organs are on the left side of his head. He’s a mirror image of other members of his species — and he wouldn’t be able to mate with normal snails because their reproductive organs wouldn’t line up.
Researchers, wanting to study the particular gene that gave him his left-coiling shell, soon found another snail with the same condition — Lefty — to mate with him. All seemed to be going well between Jeremy and Lefty, as right after the two were introduced, they were seen “flirting” via “gentle biting.”
Shortly thereafter, Tomeu, a saucy left-coiling snail from Majorca, was introduced into the situation and they all went into a simulated hibernation in the fridge together — but when they woke up, Lefty and Tomeu ended up mating only with each other. (Snails are hermaphrodites, by the way.) Jeremy, by contrast, “didn’t seem to have” the “energy” to join in this snail-sex extravaganza. Lefty has since been removed from the situation in the hopes that Jeremy and Tomeu will get it on.
These open-relationship stories really do just keep getting crazier and crazier.