Homosexual activity in animals is more common than suspected.

Some animals engage in homosexual activity

Some animals engage in homosexual activity

Biologists at the University of Toronto have found that gay behaviour in the animal kingdom has been "widely observed" in creatures ranging from meerkats to black swans.

The team found "widespread and natural" sexual activity in the wild that is unlikely to have been made public due to "publishing bias against anecdotal evidence".

Graduate student Karyn Anderson - who led the study - wrote in the paper: "Same-sex sexual behaviour occurs more frequently than what is available within the published record."

The experts say that homosexual behaviour isn't converted in more detail by researchers as it doesn't provide an accurate representation of a species or was not a priority for the lab.

Anderson told The Guardian newspaper: "This appears to be due to a perception of researchers that same-sex sexual behaviour is very rare.

"We found, however, that it was commonly observed by our survey participants.

"One thing I think we can say for certain is that same-sex sexual behaviour is widespread and natural in the animal kingdom."