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3 Marine Animals That Surprisingly Mate for Life

There's a long-standing debate about whether or not humans are built for monogamy. Some animals — like these three that mate for life — think it's NBD.


There's a long-standing debate about whether or not humans are built for monogamy. Really, though, we're all just animals. And some animals have decided they're cut out for it. Whether it's for love, mating efficiency or something else, here are some of the marine animals that mate for life.

 

1. French Angelfish

 

Not only are these tropical fish often monogamous for life, they also put up a strong joint defense against anyone that tries to break up their marriage.

 

2. Swans

 

Swans are one of the more well-known animal pairings that mate for life, although their partnerships are a little less romantic than many people think. Many scientists believe that a large part of the reason swans remain together is, well, for the kids.

The courtship ritual for swans is intense, and many types of swans lead busy lives, so they're able to raise several more batches of cygnets together if they remain a pair.

Plus, some scientists believe that swans learn from the mistakes they made while raising previous little baby swans. By remaining together, they can better correct those mistakes going forward.

 

3. Albatross

 

Many albatrosses have lifelong romances that seem like they could be something out of a Nicholas Sparks novel. The striking birds have courtships that can last years, as albatrosses don't settle for anything less than the perfect partner.

And how do they know they've found the one? It's only when they've spent enough time "dancing" together that they can perform a joint set of moves unlike any other pair.

Committed partners don't spend every waking moment together — they'll take to the sea at different times — but each will mysteriously return to the same nesting spot at the same time when both feel it's time to lay another egg.

Partnerships can last up to 50 years, until one dies. That makes them one of the most successful unions in all the animal kingdom.

 

Watch two albatrosses do their courtship dance in the video below – these two lovebirds will mate for life!

 

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Illustration by Fabio Manucci

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