Encyclopedia of Animal Cognition and Behavior

Living Edition
| Editors: Jennifer Vonk, Todd Shackelford


Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-47829-6_1378-1



Fertility is the ability of an individual to produce the offsprings by natural means. The root word of fertility is fero, which means “to carry, to bear.”


Fertility is the ability of an individual to produce the offsprings by natural means. The root word of fertility is fero, which means “to carry, to bear.” The term fertility is sometimes confused with fecundity, which defines the capacity of reproduction. Although fertility is a general term for all of the organisms, including plants, here we focused on human fertility. Louis Henry coined a term “natural fertility” which applied to the population where contraception is not used depending on the number of children that families have. The inability to conceive a child within a year or more with regular sexual intercourse is defined as infertility. The rate of fertility is an important factor to keep a close eye in the societies as many modern societies are...

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Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Centre for Cellular and Molecular BiologyHyderabadIndia
  2. 2.Department of Molecular and Human GeneticsBanaras Hindu UniversityVaranasiIndia

Section editors and affiliations

  • Peggy Mason
    • 1
  • Yuri Sugano
    • 2
  1. 1.University of ChicagoChicagoUSA
  2. 2.NeurobiologyUniversity of ChicagoChicagoUSA