The science of female fertility has been widely explored, but what about males? Here's the basic biology behind male fertility, when it peaks and why, what issues can threaten it and how to protect yours.

It all begins with puberty

Males are unable to father children prior to puberty. Along with physical changes—the development of pubic and underarm hair, growth of the penis and testicles, increased sweating and body odor, acne, deepened voice and growth spurts—puberty also marks the beginning of fertility.

Once puberty begins—around 11 to 13 years old, usually about a year after girls start puberty— boys are able to start producing spermatozoa, or sperm, and may well begin having nocturnal emissions, or wet dreams.

And just for the record, wet dreams are not something that only young boys experience. Adolescent girls, too, are just as likely to have nocturnal emissions