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No. 115: Jan-Feb 1998

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Nuclear Families

Men who work at England's Sellafield nuclear power plant father significantly more sons than daughters. Male plant workers produced 109 boys for every 100 girls. This compared with 105 boys for every 100 girls for men in the same area who did not work at the plant.

The bias was even greater for men who had received higher than normal doses of radiation in the 3 months prior to conception: 140 boys per 100 girls.

Actually, both sets of figures are significant because of the large sample employed: 260,000 children.

(Anonymous; "Does Atomic Plant Generate Sons?" Baltimore Sun, December 12, 1996.)

Comment. The average sex ratio worldwide falls between 104-107 boys per 100 girls. There are, however, some fascinating geographical extremes:

Montserrat 94.34
Aden 120.31

Why do these large differences prevail? Is Aden radioactive? For more on this subject, see our Catalog: Biological Anomalies: Humans II.

From Science Frontiers #115, JAN-FEB 1998. � 1998-2000 William R. Corliss