5 Animals that Turn Sex into a Nightmare

  • These creatures make human sex look boring — and you should be happy for that.

Most people don’t spend their time thinking about animals mating. And that’s a smart move — some animals are into some downright horrifying stuff.

We’ve already written about some strange courtship rituals that animals engage in. But once the partner is wooed and it’s time to get dirty, things don’t often get any less bizarre.

Here are some of the most nightmarish ways some animals carry on their lineage, from sexual suicide to complete bodily fusion.

Brown Antechinus — Suicide by Sex

What, you’ve never heard of the brown antechinus? That’s fine, we hadn’t either. They’re small marsupials, living in the forests of eastern and northeastern Australia.

And when mating season rolls around, they turn those forests into sweaty dens of non-stop marsupial sex. We mean that, non-stop.

When their first breeding season comes around, male brown antechinuses transform into frothing, testosterone-fueled sex maniacs. For the next two weeks, they will hump every female they find. One session can last up to 14 hours.

Unfortunately, their first mating season will also be their last.

During their lust-filled frenzy, male brown antechinuses produce immense amounts of stress hormones. The hormones will completely wreck their immune system, practically guaranteeing that they’ll die of disease, parasites, and infection soon after mating.

And if diseases don’t get them, they’ll drop dead simply from exhaustion and dehydration. Scientists have named this method of fatal breeding “suicidal reproduction.”

You have to ask — is it worth it?

Cowpea Seed Beetles — Spikes Where There Should be None

Yes, that’s exactly what you think it is.

Being a female cowpea seed beetle isn’t easy. The first problem is that you’re just a beetle that’s considered a pest, so everything wants to kill you. The second problem is the male beetle’s penis.

This horrifying organ seems less like a dong and more like some kind of a medieval torture device. It’s covered in long, sharp spikes, making it look like a brutal weapon.

But the female beetles have a way to deal with that… Right?

Nope. The weaponized penis is just as gruesome in practice as it is in appearance. During mating, the male will savagely tear apart the female’s reproductive tract.

But why? Well, it somehow increases their chances of reproduction. Scientists did an experiment where they shaved off the spikes on the male beetle’s penis and the bugs’ fertility collapsed.

The females are trying to deal with the nightmare penises by quickly evolving stronger and thicker reproductive organs. But the males answer immediately by growing the spikes even longer.

It’s a sexual evolutionary arms race that the female beetle unfortunately seems unable to win.

Ducks — Necrophiliac Group Rapists

Ducks are clumsy, cute, quacking things, right? That’s what you might think, but these adorable farmyard birds are notorious sex pests.

The males of some duck species — like the mallard — are unapologetic, habitual rapists. While some birds stage elaborate mating dances to win over a feathered lady, the word “consent” means absolutely nothing to these ducks.

If the male is in the mood and it spots a female, it will simply head over to her and ram it in. Some male ducks also have enormously long penises that help them penetrate a struggling female.

Not only that, the male ducks like to do it in groups. They form a disturbing “rape flight” where a swarm of male ducks surrounds a lone female and keeps pecking until she mates with them — or dies from the violence.

But ducks aren’t picky when it comes to choosing a victim. They’ll also happily mate with other male ducks — even if the victim is long dead.

Anglerfish — The Overly Attached Boyfriend

You can’t really say that anglerfish sex is scary since there is no sex. But the ritual that’s taken its place is pretty horrifying.

Anglerfish live in the deepest, darkest parts of the ocean, so finding a mate is difficult. They’ve developed a bizarre mating method where the male literally becomes one with the female.

Male anglerfish are several times smaller than a female. They have just one purpose in their lives — to seek out a female and bite her.

Once the male has bitten on, he’ll never let go. Eventually, his mouth fuses into the female, and his organs and body begin to atrophy.

After a while, the male reduces to nothing more than a sack of sperm. When the female feels like having babies, she’ll use the genetic material the now-dead male has left her.

One female fish can have multiple sacks that were once male fish hanging off of her. Suppose that’s one way to remember your ex-boyfriends.

Bed Bugs — Incest, Rape, and Murder

Bed bugs are repulsive enough as it is. But once you hear about how they reproduce, you’ll have an additional reason to hate these blood-sucking parasites.

The bugs are notorious for breeding extremely fast, but they don’t reproduce through gentle lovemaking. Oh no — the male bed bugs’ kink is scientifically known as “traumatic insemination.”

The penis of a male bed bug rivals the cowpea seed beetle’s in how horrible it is. But unlike the beetle’s spiked club of a dong, bed bugs have sharp, long hypodermic needles that they’ve decided to call penises.

Female bed bugs do have vagina-like reproductive organs, but that’s not where the male’s penis goes. The male just rams the needle-penis straight through the female’s exoskeleton wherever it pleases.

Aim a bit wrong and the stab kills the female. Not that the male cares — it got what it wanted.

To add to the nightmare, bed bug males are attracted to size and size only. They’ll forcibly penetrate any other bed bug bigger than themselves.

It doesn’t matter if it’s another male, their sibling, or even their parent.

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