What are the most romantic animals? To answer that, we may think of animals that mate for life, but animals in love go beyond that. It seems that some wild creatures can express love and affection. Their devotion, ability to care for each other and protect their families make them truly loving animals. Here are the top 10 species that fit this category.
#10. French Angelfish
These romantic animals are always found in pairs. French angelfish (Pomacanthus paru) form close bonds from an early age and spend their lives traveling, hunting, and eating together. These loving animals carve out individual underwater nests, which they defend aggressively. Once they mate, they are never seen without their partners.
French angelfish live in the western Atlantic, where they live on rocky reefs. They eat sponges and work as cleaners by eating the parasites of jacks, snappers, morays, and other fish.
#9. Prairie Vole
Although most rodents are polygamous, prairie voles (Microtus ochrogaster) are monogamous. They are animals that mate for life, and they won’t “remarry” if their mate dies. They are also excellent parents who share nest-building, child-rearing, and feeding responsibilities.
Prairie voles live in dry, grassy plains and abandoned farm fields. They build underground dens where they store food and raise their young. These colonies can be large, and they are a sign of the sociable, affectionate nature of these voles.
They have short ears and yellow bellies. These small rodents are not endangered, but they are listed as animals of “special concern” in some states.
Animals in love will go to great lengths to protect their mates. This is exemplified by geese, who are fiercely protective of their mates. They will put themselves in danger to protect each other, and a devoted goose will stand guard over an injured mate until it recovers or dies.
Adult males protect their nests and help raise their young. It is common to see geese families walking in line together.
Geese live in every part of the northern hemisphere, where they inhabit ponds, lakes, and rivers. As waterfowl, they move equally well on land and in the air.
Red and gray foxes are monogamous, and they build family groups that included the parents, their kits, and young, single vixens who help with the babysitting duties. In cases where the male has mated with more than one female, all of them will share the den.
Many birds mate for life, but albatrosses (Diomedeidae) are true love birds. Males don’t only perform courtship rituals when they want to mate, but they will continue “wooing” their mates with preening, bowing, and dancing moves. These romantic animals grow up learning to express love by learning elaborate dance moves. Later, they use these same courtship rituals to keep the love alive.
Albatrosses also share family duties, including building the nest, guarding the eggs, and raising the young chicks. These devoted family birds live in the southern hemisphere close to Antarctica and South America.
#5. River Otter
What is known is that they are deeply affectionate with their mates and offspring. River otters can be seen holding hands as they float. They often let their babies ride on their stomachs as they paddle lazily through the water.
One reason they hold hands is that it’s a way for a male otter to show that his mate isn’t available to other males. These loving animals also hold hands with their babies to make sure the little ones don’t float away.
#4. Barn Owl
Barn owls (Tyto alba) express love with their deep devotion to their mates. These birds mate for life and take excellent care of each other. Female barn owls watch over the nest and babies while the male hunts for food. If the male is injured, however, the female will hunt and provide food for him until he recovers.
Barn owls are the most widespread of all owl species. They live everywhere except polar and desert regions. Like many owls, they are nocturnal hunters who survive on small animals and insects.
#3. Trumpeter Swan
Swans (Cygnus cygnus) have long symbolized love and romance. Swans mate for life and raise baby swans, known as cygnets, every year. If a swan loses his or her mate, the swan will spend a long time in mourning. Many choose to live alone rather than get a new mate.
These animals in love share a beautiful courtship ritual that involves arching their necks and bringing their faces together. The motion seems to create a heart shape from their curved necks. It’s no wonder these elegant, romantic animals symbolize love and marriage.
These small, colorful parrots get their name from their sweet nature and faithfulness. They form strong, lifelong bonds with their partners. Their affectionate nature has made these love birds a popular pet.
Lovebirds are not a distinct species. The name refers to several species of the Agapornis family.
How loving and faithful are they? Loneliness is the main cause of death for lovebirds. A lovebird without a mate will eventually stop eating and waste away. People who keep them as pets must keep them in pairs.
#1. Mourning Dove or Turtle Dove
This lovely, graceful bird (Zenaida macroura) has long been a symbol of friendship and love. In Roman mythology, the goddess Fides, who represented faithfulness, was often depicted holding a turtle dove. In Greek mythology, these birds pull the chariot of Aphrodite, the goddess of love.
Their faithfulness even inspired Shakespeare, who often used turtle doves to symbolize love, including in his poem, The Phoenix and the Turtle Dove. In the Song of Solomon chapter of the Bible, turtle doves appear repeatedly as a symbol of enduring, faithful love. They also appear in the “12 Days of Christmas” song, in which the singer’s true love sends “two turtle doves” on the second day.
Turtle doves mate for life, but they will mate again if their mate dies. These birds are still common in most U.S. parks and gardens, but their populations are threatened in some parts of the world. Operation Turtle Dove and other organizations are working to preserve these beautiful, much-loved birds.