4 Unusual Animal Mating Habits

by Moin Uddin Ahmed Tipu

Sex can be weird. It can be even weirder if you’re a whiptail lizard. And for praying mantises, it can be downright dangerous! Laci Green lists some of the strangest mating rituals in the animal kingdom.

Read More:

Praying Mantis:

“The Female Praying Mantis: Sexual Predator or Misunderstood”

“The praying mantis has historically been a popular subject of mythology and folklore.”

“World first as gay King penguins become fathers”

“The newest chick in a Danish zoo’s penguin colony has two dads.”

“No Sex Needed: All-Female Lizard Species Cross Their Chromosomes to Make Babies”

“These southwestern lizards’ asexual reproduction is no longer a secret”


“The 12 species of gibbons are classified, referring to their size, as lesser apes.”

DNews is a show about the science of everyday life. We post two new videos every day of the week.

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Lucas Andrew April 25, 2013 - 6:27 PM

Totally unrelated question popped into my mind, do any animals others than humans have varying accents?

ARVIND RAJAGOPAL April 25, 2013 - 6:47 PM

Why cant a piece of paper be folded half more than seven times?

Carolina Alvarado April 25, 2013 - 6:52 PM

Wow amazing info! kinda interesting to think some female species don't need males at all… Maybe we girls are super powerful? hehe : )

Jane Justiz April 25, 2013 - 7:33 PM


Philip Yount April 25, 2013 - 9:37 PM


Victor Sujingo April 25, 2013 - 9:46 PM

this is all human would do too

Jhon Carl Cerezo April 25, 2013 - 10:28 PM

Lol at 3:00

Bhadri narayanan April 26, 2013 - 1:15 AM

Really a contract to sit in the couch eh?????

MsLyraGW April 26, 2013 - 5:51 AM

Um… I don't know. I think animals don't have a "language" but only signals. Still, maybe they do vary depending on the place the animals are.

Samantha Schutz April 26, 2013 - 10:17 AM

COWS DO. I bet other do too, but I've specifically read about cows. Their moos sound different even from 2 nearby countries.

Nick Martin April 26, 2013 - 3:10 PM

Humans stay with the same mate their whole life? what?

randomgirlxrulz April 27, 2013 - 2:11 PM

Orca whales.

jadeybaby166 April 27, 2013 - 9:52 PM

Hey Lacy, your videos are great; but in this one it does seem like you're promoting monogamy a bit. It's hardly definitively better than alternatives. specifically you refer to animals that follow that model as cute, and more human like (I'm not sure thats even correct beyond the short term of about the past 10,000 years. i assume this wasnt intentional on your part but its something to bear in mind.

jadeybaby166 April 27, 2013 - 9:54 PM

For a similarly gross mating to mantises, check out angler fish, where the mael is tiny, and is absorbed into the female after mating. Male honey bees also get a bit of a raw deal, if i remember rightly.

John-Paul Myers April 30, 2013 - 10:51 AM

Nope can't watch, her voice is horrible

Jesminnie_ April 30, 2013 - 5:41 PM

Dun mess with the ladies xD u boys are lucky that after mating women dun cut or eat u up xD

Nicroy52 May 19, 2013 - 1:58 PM

Gahh she is so hot

Syd Gettier May 27, 2013 - 11:27 AM

Gay penguins!! Parks and Rec anyone??

GrimTheCrow May 29, 2013 - 8:07 PM

They have different languages too. A french crow can't understand an american one and vice versa.

Ava S June 18, 2013 - 8:46 AM

did you know that sea otter males bite the females nose when mating until they bleed? its sort of gross

Colton Cayward June 22, 2013 - 8:19 PM

i hate commercials on youtube

Sumowning June 22, 2013 - 9:52 PM

You make no sense.

BlackVirtue June 22, 2013 - 11:02 PM

ZOO is unnatural "habitat" so it is reasonable to find unnatural behavior, just like you find it in jail with humans.

Joseph Brunner June 25, 2013 - 6:23 AM

Over three hundred one? =3

mantisman230 July 1, 2013 - 12:42 PM

The males head does not have to be eaten in religiosa the eggs are fertilized either way plus I have never lost a male to beheading either its a rare occurance in reality

BlackVirtue July 8, 2013 - 5:42 PM

Well that's sad then, I understand why humans or "civilized" animals have this condition, it's not as obvious to me about animals in natural habitat, don't see any specific answers by scientists too.

Alexander Pavel July 21, 2013 - 9:14 PM

dolphins /watch?annotation_id=annotation_99713&feature=iv&src_vid=phSz3haAhRU&v=ycRaQvhwrvs

Miss Amanda's world July 27, 2013 - 1:37 AM

most bird species have 1 life partner. woth exception of emu the dad takew over once eggs are layed takes eggs watches them then raises the chicks.

AYE August 3, 2013 - 7:38 PM

that is so fucking cute. gay penguins :3

rorolilred August 10, 2013 - 5:06 AM

I heard that cows moo differently in different countries but I'm not sure how true that is lol.

An Ian September 1, 2013 - 8:16 PM

how can one tell we cant traslste thare speach

secretagentcandy September 6, 2013 - 4:04 AM

You don't need to know what a person is saying to differentiate between a Japanese and an Italian speaker.

An Ian September 6, 2013 - 5:10 AM

I cant tell Japaneses and Chiness

MultiLelde September 9, 2013 - 3:36 AM

Think thats a Vsauce question.

emilie reed January 9, 2014 - 3:29 AM

this only occers in captivity or under the situation the male forgot to bring a gift.

Jaron Yu February 11, 2014 - 8:32 AM

skitti and wailord

Sasha March 13, 2014 - 6:33 PM

Beavers are mates for life to even if one dies

Masta Blasta March 19, 2014 - 9:50 PM

some lizards are asexual

FluffyMarshmallow July 23, 2014 - 10:45 AM

Did you know male whiptail lizards are all extinct.

Jenna November 17, 2014 - 11:38 PM

Actually the asexual species of whip tail lizard (C. Uniparens)  ARE clones of each other….not sure why she said they aren't. 

Wolfie Meows December 4, 2014 - 12:07 AM

the whiptail lizard is also called a lesbian lizard… cuz even if they do reproduce asexualy, they do sexual activities with other females, so its like win win for them

Jj Mutyaba December 29, 2014 - 9:13 AM

The female praying mantis doesn't always eat the male, it's just if she's bored or hasn't eaten in a while, or the male flys away.

Danielle Riley February 15, 2015 - 6:09 AM

Omg!!! Those penguins are so cool

Acid UniKorn420 April 4, 2017 - 10:39 PM

Loved the vid.

john Kennedy December 17, 2019 - 11:35 AM

After I saw the thumbnail like a pray mantis saying "uh oh" I said " stinky "

beep boop July 11, 2021 - 6:30 PM

Mantises don't actually eat each other in the wild