We as humans have been obsessing about the idea of true love and a concept of soul mates for as long as we can remember. We are all on the same quest and we all get discouraged here and there and lose hope in love. When that happens we might be able to look for hope and inspiration in the animal kingdom, as you are about to see, there are animal species that can really teach us a thing or two about commitment and affection.
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As we all know, Swans are perhaps the most beautiful birds existing, we often describe them as gracious and proud creatures. And those attributes can most definitely be used to describe their mating process as well. Like every other species on this list, Swans form long lasting relationships with the opposite sex and spend a lot of effort nurturing the mutual bond. During the breeding season their mating process can last up to an hour unlike other bird species where mating takes place in a matter of seconds, and they do it over and over again, far more than it is necessary to fertilize the eggs, in this way they form a powerful bond with each other.
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Albatrosses are most known for their very complex performance by which they attract the opposite sex. A male albatross uses a mixture of wing and head movements combined with producing different sounds, creating a dance-like performance of sky-pointing, wing-spreading and clucking by which a female estimates his value, after all, once she chooses a partner for her they stay together for life.
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Wolves known for their aggression and cruelty, are in fact very affectionate creatures when it comes to their life partner. As wolf packs live in a very strict hierarchy, in the breeding period which lasts usually from January to April, only the alpha pair mates, to avoid overpopulation in the pack.
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Penguins are one of the most famous monogamous species in the world. They are most famous for the fact that they mate with a same partner year after year and that they spend around 6 months apart every year. Even though the chances of them finding their mates after that much time, among thousands of other penguins are small, they still make it year after year. When they mate a female lays one or two eggs that both parents keep safe taking turns for 25 to 45 days until it hatches.
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Beavers are incredibly loyal to their mates. Only case scenario in which a beaver changes its lifelong partner is in case of a death, than they find other mates. Male and female become reproductively mature at the same age, when they are around 3 years old, and that is when they choose their “soul mates”. They mate only in January and February, and a female carries a baby between 60 and 130 days.
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Red Foxes reproduce only once a year, in spring, but they do it every year with a same partner and they raise a family together. They have to put in a lot of effort in raising their babies, based on a fact that they are born blind, deaf and toothless.
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Gibbon monkeys form relationships that are quite similar to our love relationships as humans. When they find their partner, they spend a lot of time together in the trees, they can even break up with each other and seek other mates if the relationship wasn’t working. What is interesting about them is the fact that male and female are quite similar based on a physical characteristics, while in other species it is not rare to see that a male is physically bigger and stronger than a female.
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Another species of monkeys that are monogamous are Titi monkeys. They live in South America and can be found in groups of two to seven. These groups are actually families, each one consists of an adult couple and their children. These monkeys are known for their unusually strong bonds and affection. A couple does almost everything together, they hold hands and intertwine their long tails, they demonstrate jealous behavior when an intruder shows up and act agitated when they are separated.
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The Mourning Dove
The Mourning Dove also known as the Turtle Dove and the Rain Dove is a common species we are all familiar with. Amongst monogamous animals these doves are probably the most mainstream couples. There isn’t much difference in appearance between a male and a female, both are light grey color and about the same size. A couple can breed multiple times during a year and can have up to 6 offspring a year. The male and the female take care of the young feeding it with crop milk.
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Bald Eagles are known for their strength and incredibly long life span – 20 to 30 years. Also, because of their might and endurance they have been chosen as the emblem of USA in 1782. But a little known fact is that they mate for life. A couple of these glorious birds can have up to 25 eaglets per life. The eaglets are born with a brown head but after 5 to 6 years they become bald headed adults.
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Perhaps one of the most notorious bird species are Black Vultures. Their scary appearance and a fact that they only feed on carcasses doesn’t make it hard to believe that they are known as the symbol of death in some cultures. But the less known fact about them is that they have one partner for life and that they don’t separate over the years, not even for a day. They feed their fledglings for about eight months and they maintain bonds with other vulture families, living together in an organized system.
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