A common symbol used to represent the male sex is the Mars symbol, ♂ (Unicode: U 2642 Alt codes: Alt 11)—a circle with an arrow pointing northeast.
The symbol is identical to the planetary symbol of Mars.
According to Stearn, however, all the historical evidence favours that it is derived from θρ, the contraction of the Greek name for the planet Mars, which is Thouros.
The sex of a particular organism may be determined by a number of factors.
Other species, such as some snails, practice sex change: adults start out male, then become female.
In tropical clown fish, the dominant individual in a group becomes female while the other ones are male.
Most male mammals, including male humans, have a Y chromosome, which codes for the production of larger amounts of testosterone to develop male reproductive organs.
Not all species share a common sex-determination system.
As of the year 2012, the United Arab Emirates has the highest ratio of human males in the world, followed by Qatar.
ova) and differences between males and females in one lineage are not always predictive of differences in another.
Male/female dimorphism between organisms or reproductive organs of different sexes is not limited to animals; male gametes are produced by chytrids, diatoms and land plants, among others.
It was first used to denote sex by Carl Linnaeus in 1751.
The symbol is often called a stylized representation of the Roman god Mars' shield and spear.