12 Weird But True Animal Date Night Facts

As part of the OKC Zoo's inaugural Date Nights event series every Thursday in June, here are 12 weird, but true, animal date night facts. (Some of these facts are slightly risqué and may not be appropriate for children).

 Angler Fish

Angler Fish

When he’s found a mate, the male angler fish will fuse with the larger female. The body parts he doesn’t need anymore (eyes, fins and some internal organs) wither away until he’s little more than a lump of flesh hanging from the female, taking her food and providing sperm.

 Honey Bees

Honey Bee

For honey bees, mating occurs mid-flight. The male dies shortly after copulating as his reproductive organ and abdominal tissue are ripped from his body and left in the female.

Blue Footed Booby

Blue-Footed Booby

The condition of a blue-footed booby’s feet indicates his health and age to potential partners. The male does a high-stepping strut to show off his feet to prospective mates.

Bowerbird

To attract females, male bowerbirds build elaborate structures which they decorate with objects like flowers, fruit, bones and even beetle shells.

Clownfish

Clownfish

Some fish, like the clownfish, can change from male to female. Others, like the kobudai, can change from female to male. There are even those like the hawkfish (all born female) that can change to male then back to female when necessary.

Giraffe

Giraffe

Male giraffes will drink a female’s urine to tell if she is ready to mate.

Mice

Mice

Male mice sing unique high-pitched songs to attract a mate. But female mice are picky about which songs they like; they prefer tunes that differ from those sung by their relatives.

Barn Owl

Barn Owls

Male barn owls “flirt” by giving potential mates dead mice and screeching. Interested females respond by croaking.

Polar Bears

Polar Bears

It’s seldom that adult animals play together, but polar bear courtship is one of the rare exceptions. Polar bear dates consist of skiing down slopes, trampling through the snow and rolling around.

Praying Mantis

Praying Mantis

A female praying mantis lures males with pheromones and sometimes, rather than mating, will bite the head of her suitors. Males make up to 60% of her diet during mating season.

Sea Otters

Sea Otters

Sea otters hold hands while they sleep so they don’t drift apart.

Snakes

Red Garter Snake

When it’s time to mate, up to 100 males can go after a single female red garter snake at the same time. The female ends up in the middle of a large mating ball.

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