Home > News Updated 23 October 2014 How sex was invented Scientists have unveiled how the first sex on earth happened, and it wasn't pretty. 25 Placoderm from Shutterstock ~ Once upon a time there was a daddy placoderm and a mummy placoderm, and they liked each other a lot. So, one day, these two placoderms stood next to one another and had sex, and it was the first time sex as we (tangentially) know it had happened on planet Earth. Few similarities to human sexThis is what scientists announced this week following a detailed analysis of fossils discovered in as geographically unaffiliated destinations as Scotland, China and Estonia, said the paper which was published in Nature. The animals in questions lived not in the sea, but in lakes, and existed around 380 million years ago. Mankind earliest ancestor was believed to have lived only 1.8 million years ago.The logistics of the coupling bore very few similarities to human sex. Firstly, the animals did not face each other or approach "doggy style" from the read. Instead, the animals floated side by side "as if they were square dancing."As for genitals, they were to be found at the bottom end of the organism, where the feet would be on a human. The male had a pair of claspers, long, rigid, L-shaped appendages. The female had genital plates which formed a small area on her backside.These genital plates were described in the paper as being like a cheese grater. This rough texture would cause the male claspers to get locked in place and allow the transfer of sperm to commence.Read: Nutrition improves sperm quality Strangely, over time fish seem to have lost the ability to have sex this way, with eggs being fertilised inside the body of the female. Modern fish release eggs and sperm into the water where they are then fertilised, outside of the body. Why this happened remains a mystery to scientists, reports Vox. Read more:The rampant sex lives of animals Well-fed sperm are happy sperm New animal literally sexes itself to death Image: Placoderm from Shutterstock Harry Phillips NEXT ON HEALTH24X Medical first: Twins treated for rare condition while still in the womb 2018-05-22 18:19 More: News advertisement Read Health24’s Comments Policy Comment on this story 25 comments Comments have been closed for this article. Logout Comment 0 characters remaining Share on Facebook Loading comments... Other news Medical Medical first: Twins treated for rare condition while still in the womb News SAHRC overseeing HIV patients' transfer to public health facilities Medical 7 reasons why your sinusitis could be worse in winter Lifestyle How skipping this much sleep makes arguing with your partner more dangerous Fitness Unlock your best performance with these 4 mindset tips Lifestyle SEE: How many people smoke around the world? From our sponsors Win a R1 500 hamper with Alpecin Hypertension Consumer Fact Sheet Understanding diabetes self-management WIN a R2000 Skin Renewal voucher! Live healthier Mental health & your work » How open are you about mental illness in the workplace? Mental health in the workplace – what you can do to help If you know that one of your colleagues suffers from a mental illness, would you be able to help them at work? Maligay Govender offers some helpful mental health "first aid" tips. Sleep & You » Sleep vs. no sleep Diagnosis of insomnia 6 things that are sabotaging your sleep Kick these shut-eye killers to the kerb and make your whole life better – overnight.