Over at Short Sharp Science (the New Scientist blog), I ran into a post that lists ten animal behaviours that are absolutely bizarre. Of these, prurient soul that I am, I selected just a few sensational behaviours related to their sex lives:
Shark bites, love bites: The male White-tipped Reef Shark grips the female with his teeth to ensure that his mate doesn’t get away from his amorous advances or until he hears from his dentist, whichever is sooner.
Say it with weeds: Male Amazon River Dolphins, or Boutou, present bouquets of seaweed to other dolphins in the hope that they will mate with them. Big business awaits underwater florists, er… weedists.
Husband attached, bare essentials only: Chances are you haven’t heard of the male Leafvent Anglerfish. He latches on to the female of his choice by his privates and just wastes away. When it’s time, all that’s left of him – his unspeakables – fire sperm into her and knocks her up. Eerie, eh?
Mate, or die trying: Man or mouse, this simple adage holds true. The male marsupial mouse mates only once in his lifetime, and he dies trying to keep other males from ravishing his promiscuous mate. Total tragedy, any way you look at it.
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