Love in the Wild

Top 10 Bizarre Mating Rituals

Male prairie chickens make loud “booming” noises that can be heard miles away and do an elaborate dance to compete for female attention.

American burying beetles are monogamous and raise children together. Parents move and bury dead animals up to 200 times their weight to serve as food for their larvae.

Male angler fish permanently latch on to females, their brains and organs dissolving until they become just a small lump that releases sperm whenever the female lays eggs.

Mussel larvae must attach to fish to grow. Mother mussels wave appendages that look like worms, crayfish or other bait to lure fish and shoot their larvae onto them.

Unlike most rodents, prairie voles are monogamous. Special hormone receptors located in their brain’s reward centers give them the sense of pleasure from monogamy.

To attract mates, male bowers build elaborate bachelor pads decorated with flowers, leaves, shells or walls painted with chewed berries. The drabber their feathers, the flashier their pads.

Male tree crickets use leafs to amplifier their love songs. During mating, the males distract the females by singing and feeding them until fertilization can occur.

Lions mate for only 20 seconds at a time, but couple up to 40 times a day for as many as seven days straight, forgetting to hunt or eat.

Female day octopi frequently eat their mates. Males, therefore, keep their distance and use one of their arms to place a sperm packet under the female’s body covering.

Because little brown bats mate in the autumn—but hibernate over the winter—females store sperm for seven months to delay pregnancy until springtime.

Unfortunately, many of these creatures are at risk of disappearing forever because of habitat loss, climate change and other threats. Lend a helping hand today and protect the lands they call home.


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