Zookeepers who have long observed homosexuality in caged animals believed that stressors such as confinement, unnatural living conditions and diet were at work. But when behaviorists began reporting the presence of homosexuality in animals in the wild, it was found to be not only common, but even more prevalent than in humans.

Homosexuality has been observed in more than 1,500 animal species. Giraffes, penguins, beetles, parrots, whales and dolphins engage in pair bonding that's as committed and long lasting as with heterosexual pairs. Homosexuality has also been identified in 130 species of birds and bees.

But this isn't just a recent phenomenon. Apparent homosexual behavior among hyenas was observed 2,300 years ago by the Greek philosopher Aristotle.

This Rainbow Minute was read by Dustin Richardson.

“The Rainbow Minute” is produced by Judd Proctor and Brian Burns and can be heard every weekday at 7:59am, 12:29pm and 2:59pm on WRIR – 97.3fm in Richmond, Virginia, and webcast at wrir.org. It’s also heard internationally on over 200 stations.