If you're looking at Hollywood, mating is a delicate dance full of romance. But in the animal kingdom, anything goes. Here are some insane mating habits from our fellow members of the animal kingdom that are almost too shocking to believe!
1/19. Ever heard of the sport fencing? Well flatworms take this to a whole new level! Mating rituals with flatworms are combination of both fighting and sex.
Flatworms are hermaphrodites; meaning they have both male and female sexual organs. However, during sex, neither wants to be the female. Why?
Females have to bear children - a task that has a huge energy cost.
So what do two flatworms do when they decide to mate? They expose their double-pronged penises and fight! Both try to stab the other with their members. The loser gets inseminated through the skin, now a mother-to-be.
2/19. Time to put an interesting twist on the story of 'Finding Nemo'.
Clownfish live in schools of only males with the exception of one large, dominant female. Only the dominant male of the colony mates with the female.
Here's the twist clownfish are something called sequential hermaphrodites. That means clownfish can switch sexes throughout their life history! All clownfish are born male, but if the dominant female dies, the dominant male of the group with start eating more, growing in size and becomes the new dominant female.
Sorry Nemo, your father is actually your mother!
3/19. Dolphins are loved for their astonishing intelligence and friendly manner. But as it turns out they're also sexual deviants.
Male dolphins are super sexually charged and can mate multiple times every single day. This means that male dolphins are rarely satisfied you might even catch one humping a turtle or piece of coral reef!
But for all his fancy sexual tricks, the male dolphin only lasts an average of 12 seconds. Not such a stud after all!
4/19. In the hyena world, females rule. Not only are they larger and stronger than the males, but also much more aggressive.
Their claim to fame is an enlarged clitoris, known as a pseudopenis, which can be erected at will. In order for males to mate with this formidable creature, they have to insert their own penis into the females pseudopenis.
5/19. See that honey bee flying around lazily, looking for pollen from a flower? You may associate that little guy with honey, but now you add exploding genitals to the list! The virgin queen goes on her first mating flight with a dozen or so drones (male bees), all of which want to mate with her. Then, as the lucky fellas go to mate with the queen, their genitals snap right off inside of her!
May seem gruesome, but in the evolutionary sense it's a plus because the broken off sexual organ provides as a genital plug. This stops others from successfully mating with the queen.
Unfortunately for the male drones who had an exploding incident, they die shortly afterwards. Rough, huh?
More insane animal mating rituals on the next page!
6/19. What's the best way to emerge from hibernation at the end of a long season? An orgy, of course!
Female red-sided garter snakes release a pheromone that causes all the male red-sided garters to come "running", wriggling around her until they become one big clump, known as a mating ball.
Red-sided garters are the original swingers!
7/19. Ah, giraffes! The majestic creatures of the African savannah. As it turns out, these long-necked animals have some very strange mating habits. First, males face off to fight for the chance to mate with a female. They engage in practice known as "necking", where they 'joust' with their necks. Afterwards this tiring process, the two males mate with each other! Love is love, am I right?
Next, the victorious male goes over to the female giraffe and nudges her backside, prompting her to pee. He then takes a mouthful of her urine to determine if she's in heat (fertile). If this lucky lady is ready to make babies, he'll follow her around until she's ready to mate.
8/19. Mating can be a waiting game, and on the top of that game is the Galapagos Giant Tortoise. It takes 40 YEARS for one of these guys to reach sexual maturity.
No wonder they're raring to get going! Males compete over females by comparing neck sizes the one with the longest neck wins. Mating can then last up hours, so excited to be finally having the chance to get down and dirty.
As they say, "slow and steady wins the race"!
Males that lose competition for the female can be found frustratedly humping a rock or another male giant tortoise.
9/19. Stabbing your mate may help with your reproductive success? Turns out the common Garden Snail lives it's life by this rule.
Prior to mating, garden snails engage in an elaborate dance that can last up to 6 hours. Then, as the dance comes to an end, the hermaphroditic slugs move their genital pores as close as possible to each other and... fire a huge calcified dart into the other snail! Named "love darts", these arrow-like projectiles are thought to increase the chance of the snail's sperm survival after mating.
Mating can be a dangerous game, especially if you're a little garden snail!
More insane mating habits from the animal kingdom on the next page!
10/19. It's hard to live the sweet life when you're a male anglerfish.
Already terrifying creatures (as shown below), anglerfish females are multiple times the size of male anglers. Not only that, but finding a mate is crucial for the male, as he will die without a female host.
When a male angler does comes across a female, he bites into her side, mouth fusing to her skin, where he essentially becomes a sperm sac for her to use at will. The male depends on the female for nutrients for the rest of his sexual parasitic life.
Talk about a clinger!
11/19. The female North American porcupine has an extremely low libido except for a period of 8-12 hours every year. When she's feelin' in the mood, she releases this odour in her urine that attracts male porcupine.
Excited males then must fight each other for the chance to mate with her. Then, the victor decides to go ahead and show his affection for the female porcupine by... spraying pee all over her!
If she's receptive, she'll force the male to mate with her mutliple times, or find another male if her current beau gets too tired.
12/19. The Magnificent Frigatebirds are large seabirds that are completely black with the exception of a large red spot under their throat. While trying to attract a cute female frigatebird during mating season, males inflate their red throat pouches into a huge red balloon a process which can take up to 20 minutes. The male with the largest and shiniest throat is the most desirable.
Then, waggle their heads back and forth while shaking his wings and squawking, they try and get the ladies' attention. If successful, after mating the male in an attempt to keep his lady from checking out other large throated males in the colony he covers her eyes with his wing.
13/19. Giant pandas are one of the most popular animals on the planet they're just so dang adorable! The only thing that beats out their extremely level of cuteness is their extreme level of laziness.
What contributes to giant panda's giant sense of laziness is having very little excess energy at their disposal. Although carnivorous in nature, 99% of their diet consists of bamboo, meaning that these cuddly idiots need to be constantly eating to gain enough energy of their massive form. Along with this and the stressors of being in captivity, giant pandas don't mate in captivity.
To get pandas in the mood, zoos have started showing these cute bears some x-rated panda porn with good results! Recently, there have been a number of breeding successes of giant pandas in captivity.
More hilarious and shocking mating habits on the next page!
14/19. Looking for a bit of romance in your life? Well look no further than oneof the most romantic animals on the planet the red velvet mite!
Males leave a little sac of sperm called a spermatophore on a leave or twig. Then, using a strand of woven silk, he creates an intricate path for the female to follow, leading to the sperm.
These paths are like little pieces of art, and the female will follow the trail of the"artist" she likes best!
15/19. A sure fire way to impress a lady is to have a sweet pad. Bowerbirds are no exception to this rule.
Male bowerbirds construct elaborate nests to attract their mate. Collecting colorful flowers, rocks and sometimes even garbage, they create a beautiful oasis for the perspective females.
These guys are the original interior decorators!
16/19. Ever thought, "hey, sex could be way more exciting."? Well argonauts (a type of octopus) would have to disagree.
Males are much smaller than the females of the same species. They only really have one chance to reproduce so they have to do it right! Filling one of their tentacles with sperm, the male inserts it into the female then it detaches.
Yep, the male leaves the tentacle inside the female! Guess the much larger females are just too intimidating for the tiny males to handle.
17/19. Trying to find a partner can be such an annoying process. Well the whiptail lizard has completely removed that from the equation all whiptails are female!
That's right, there's no sex in creating offspring, it all happens asexually. Therefore, essentially all whiptail lizards are clones of their mother!
Reproduction may not include sex exactly, but in order to stimulate egg production, females take turns mounting each other.
18/19. We've all heard the phrase "size matters". Well this especially holds true for the banana slug. Although all of these hermaphroditic slugs are well endowed with appendages as long as their body, if their junk is not similar size to the body of their partner, it will become stuck!
And once their stuck, the most common way for them to get free is by their angry partner chewing their genitals off.
Better safe than sorry, fellas.
Yes, us. With all of the odd online dating rituals and complex flirting practices, any alien race stopping by would certainly say "WTF".