One Bird of Paradise’s Splendid Courtship Ritual

Like many species of birds, the male six-plumed bird of paradise, also known as the parotia, is larger and more colorful than his female counterpart. He also competes with other males for the privilege to mate with the choicest females. The parotia goes so far as to prepare a particular space in which to dazzle the female parotia. He treats his prime real estate on the jungle floor of New Guinea like a prized bachelor pad, cleaning it and decorating it before unleashing a throaty mating call.

When a female arrives, the lusting bachelor dances his heart out, extending his black and blue-dotted plumage and doing his best Nureyev. Afterward, he waits for the female’s reaction. Depending on the female, the reaction is either climactic or not, such as the outcome of this video.

Dance is not uncommon as a social tool among many species of birds and other types of animals. According to LiveScience, mating dances date back to the dinosaurs. Many creatures perform some variation of a mating dance, but birds seem to excel. Check out this video of a moonwalking red-capped manakin.

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