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Life on our planet exists due to the fact that organisms and creatures constantly multiply and leave behind offspring. This is the only way to avoid extinction.
There are many interesting breeding methods, but mating is the most common. Creatures of different sexes carry out some kind of exchange of substances, which allows offspring to appear with the characteristics of their parents.
But the more a person learns about the animal world, the more unusual, strange, and often incomprehensible, is in it. Mating in nature sometimes looks very unusual.
Scorpions. Some creatures like to dance before intercourse. Among them are flamingos and scorpions. Sometimes this rite is not needed to attract attention to oneself from the opposite sex and takes place in private. In a scorpion, mating is part of a two-person walk. This usually happens on a moonless night, after the male surrounds the female with attention before the beginning of the ritual itself. At the right moment, the scorpion takes the lady's claws in his own, and this couple begins to perform something like a tango. This dance can go on all day. In the course of such movements, the male puts a capsule with his sperm on the ground and gently brings his partner to this place. He needs the female to be right above the capsule and pull it into her body. And although the dance in itself may seem romantic, the male does not hold his partner's claws for beauty - such a love hug is intended so that the cannibal female does not rip off her friend's head.
Bowerbirds. In order for the male bowerbirds to continue their race, they need to maximally equip their bachelor dwelling - a hut. That is why the male house is devoid of the disorder and chaos, which usually appears without female participation. The bowerbirds are systematically building a beautiful home. Only if the female approves of her future nest will she enable the architect to mate with herself. Bowerbirds live in Australia and build their nests on the ground with twigs, leaves, bones, stones, colorful flower decorations and even insects. In a word, everything that the builder turns up at hand is suitable. And the main part of the nest is built in the form of a tunnel or arch, in which a path of small objects is laid. The inhabitants walk back and forth along it. It is believed that uniformity and uniformity are very important for female bowerbirds. Taking into account such requirements for housing on the part of females, males specially leave small things on the path. Large parts are placed further from the path. As a result, for the bird located between them, everything will seem to be the same size. This optical illusion is called a changed perspective. It is likely that it was the birds that earned the right to be considered the first artists, having learned to create such works of art long before humans. So the males of the hut are forced to spend most of their time improving the hut. As a result, it takes a very long time to bring a love nest to mind. Only here many houses remain without the attention of females. Older and more experienced males, who are more likely to mate, are successful. Such bowerbirds do not have problems with the attention of females and can mate several dozen times in one season.
Flamingo. Mating processes in many living creatures are very colorful, these are real rituals. But the flamingos are the champions. Their shows can even compete with those that a person creates, carefully rehearsing. Before mating begins, the entire colony of birds gathers in one place and begins to move synchronously, as if under the command of an experienced choreographer. Flamingos stretch their long necks, begin to march, move their heads from side to side, and fluff up their feathers. To an outsider, this sight looks very beautiful. And the flamingos themselves get an opportunity to get a better look at each other during such a show. Scientists believe that in this case, the female chooses a partner for herself who repeats her intricate movements better than anyone else. And what's a show without makeup? Flamingos also know a lot about this. During the breeding season, these birds smear oil all over their bodies, which allows them to be even more pink, and therefore more attractive to their partners. This oil is secreted by a special gland located next to the bird's tail. The liquid is needed to make the feathers waterproof. But during the breeding season, the body understands a special need and produces oil much more actively. And the pink color in flamingos is also maintained thanks to the eating of crustaceans by the bird. But the oil contains a carotenoid that makes the color even more vibrant.
Spotted marsupials. In Australia. Tasmania and New Guinea are inhabited by small rodents, which are called either marsupial cats, or spotted marsupials, which is correct. Although outwardly these mammals look innocent, during mating they become extremely angry and at least aggressive. The beginning of the ritual is quite traditional for the wild. The female leaves behind a tempting trail of urine, which the male attacks. He begins to pursue his girlfriend until she understands his intentions. At this moment, she raises her paw and allows the male to carefully sniff at her, thereby giving a signal that he is ready to mate. And at this moment cruelty begins. During mating, the male literally jumps onto the back of his female, clinging to her neck. He does it so hard that the female's neck swells up a lot, and the whole back is covered with cuts. And all this sexual intercourse lasts up to 24 hours. All this time, the poor female is forced to sit without movement, she lowers her head and closes her eyes, as if she wants to abstract herself from the uniform violence that is happening to her. But it so happens that males are so aggressive in mating that they even kill their partner. It is also worth considering the fact that if the female does not immediately agree to copulate, then the male kills her almost immediately. But the females still “laugh last”. Males literally exhaust themselves to death by trying to make as many copulations as possible. Throughout the breeding season, aggressive animals fight with competitors, eat little and hardly sleep. As a result, by the end of the year, the population of spotted marsupials may generally consist of only females and their cubs.
Blowfish. Not all creatures achieve the location of females by force. Puffer males are very adept at courtship. These fish show a lot of imagination to attract the female. To do this, puffers at the bottom of the ocean create rounded and detailed shapes, right in the sand. The fish themselves are up to 12 centimeters long, and their patterns reach two meters wide. The craftsmen also decorate their creations with pieces of coral. To create such a bizarre nest, the male spends up to 10 days. Only if the female appreciates the beauty of the creation will she lay her eggs on the smooth central circle. Scientists are still at a loss to say by what criteria the females choose the nest they need. Obviously, its large and well-decorated forms indicate the strength and health of the male, which attracts the female. It is interesting that people for several decades knew about the existence of such figures on the sand, but could not understand what force or creatures create them. It was only in 2012 that a Japanese underwater photographer managed to capture a moment of creativity.
Prairie voles. Everyone knows that most of the rodents are real giants of sex. Against this background, the habit of the prairie vole to remain monogamous throughout its life, while remaining faithful to one partner, looks unusual. Nevertheless, reproduction occurs quite often, females generally bring from two to four offspring annually. But females do it mainly with one partner, and the bond between the female and the males persists throughout their lives. But it happens that voles, under the influence of either hormones, or other temptations, mate with other partners. Nevertheless, rare infidelities do not destroy couples, the mice still share their nest and raise their offspring. And the creation of such a long relationship in prairie voles is explained not by their high moral principles, but by neurochemistry. It turns out that members of this family differ from other voles by a large number of receptors for the hormones oxytocin and vasopression. They just enhance the feeling of affection. As a result, mice experience a real thrill from a constant partner. Scientists continue to study prairie voles and their hormones in order to understand the reason for the formation of pairs already in humans. If we understand why, even against such a background, some voles tend to treason, then it will be possible to explain similar human behavior.
Sea Horses. Like humans, seahorses take long care of females. Before sexual intercourse itself takes place, there will be a lot of dates. Skates that attracted each other meet every morning and perform a kind of intimate dance. The creatures swim side by side, intertwining their tails and moving in unison to each other. The difference from scorpions is that such a dance is really romantic, and not a precautionary measure. Observing the skates while courting is really touching. Skating gradually takes relationships to a new level. The female begins to lay her eggs in the male's pocket, making him pregnant. And after he gives birth and offspring are born, the happy father throws the young to chance. The male himself prepares to find new love for himself in the next breeding season.
Albatrosses. These birds have a unique sex life for many reasons. First of all, they are monogamous. Both male and female take care of chicks, which is quite rare for the animal world. And their mating ritual really looks ridiculous. Biologists call it a dance, but from the outside it seems that the birds are trying to fence with their huge beaks. Albatrosses live for quite a long time - up to half a century. Every year after reaching adulthood, the birds gather on land, where they converge with their chosen partners and begin to breed. When a pair of albatrosses meets, they begin to grab each other by the beak, as if fencing, make a variety of crackling sounds and walk from side to side. This ritual does not look particularly passionate, but the birds themselves like it. Soon, the couple hones their dance and literally finds a common language, creating their own special dialect, inherent only to them. But the mating ritual becomes less necessary over time, or even disappears from the life of the couple altogether. This effect is well known to people who have been next to each other for a long time.
Water striders. These insects have an amazing talent - they can walk on water. In males, courtship is not particularly sophisticated - they simply jump on the female, which either agrees to mating or pays for refusal. If the lady is indifferent to such energetic courtship, the male sends small waves through the water, thereby attracting predators. And in case of agreement, the water strider stops letting ripples, starting to reproduce. That's just how safe it is to do it on the surface of the water, given that there are many hungry fish in the reservoir. But the process of reproduction itself leaves the females indifferent, because in one mating they can fertilize so many eggs that will be enough for the rest of their lives. Nevertheless, poor insects prefer not to conflict with the blackmailer male and not to complicate an already dangerous situation, but simply to surrender to him.
Cuttlefish. Everyone knows the ability of these cephalopods to blend in with the terrain, demonstrating their camouflage skills. But the ability to instantly change your color in literally a split second is useful not only for hiding. It turns out that male cuttlefish use their camouflage to gain the female's attention. In most populations of these mollusks, she is a lady sometimes even for ten gentlemen. So males have to demonstrate their talents in every possible way in order to get a chance for mating and breeding. In such competitions, small and weak cuttlefish have no chance at all. But in such a battle, the mind sometimes wins over brute physical strength. Nature has allowed the most cunning males of cuttlefish to disguise themselves as females, changing their colors, and also hiding their additional limb. It is present in males for sperm transfer. This is how cunning people pretend to be of the opposite sex. While other males are fighting each other for the right to access the body, the smartest ones quietly get to the desired goal. Sometimes the sly ones are only half disguised. The part of their body that is visible to the female looks as usual. And the other half depicts a cuttlefish of the opposite sex. Thus, the rivals are deceived, and the female sees the true face of the gentleman.