Watch a Cuttlefish Lay Her Eggs in Coral While Her Loyal Mate Stands By on Watch

by Owen James Burke

Screen Shot 2015-05-22 at 5.14.59 PM

Screenshot from Kriss Sieniawski‘s video.

Cuttlefish, despite their name are not fish but cephalopods (along with squid and octopus). Reproduction usually involves multiple males duking it out for the honor of a female (there are about four to five males for every female cuttlefish), who generally accommodates the largest, strongest male–same old story, yes, but there’s a twist: the male sticks by the female to protect her until she lays the eggs, some hours later. Watch the video below, and in the top right of your screen you’ll see a faithful mate at her service.

Protecting the female can actually prove to be more of a task than courting her, and this is where things can turn violent. If another male approaches between the time the deed is done and the eggs are laid, the two will fight to the death by luring each other toward their mouths until one sees an opportunity to deliver a fatal, paralyzing bite. Who says chivalry’s dead? –OJB

Cuttlefish laying its eggs

Posted by Kriss Sieniawski on Monday, 18 May 2015

 

 

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