Flirting Tips From The Natural World

How animals get physical and emit good scents
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 18, 2011 2:18 PM CDT
Scientists Reveal Flirting Tips From the Natural World
Two penguins in love.   (Shutterstock)

(Newser) – Trying to attract a beautiful, hunky, or otherwise desirable biped? Zoologists and anthropologists at the Natural History Museum in London have a few tips drawn from the natural world, the Telegraph reports:

  • Make Men Work. Male bower birds build nests. Birds of paradise stage flamboyant courtship displays. So let men shake it on the dance floor, or show off that shiny new cell phone.

  • Boys, Find a Wing Man. Male manakin birds adopt an apprentice to help them with mating dances. Human men, too, can benefit from a buddy who makes them look good.
  • Touch, Touch. Sea horses entwine tails and swim in tandem. Snails caress with their tentacles. For people, a brief touch on the arm can say it all.
  • Don't Touch, Don't Touch. Like emperor penguins who extend head and neck while standing face-to-face, humans can kindle electrical energy by getting close but not touching.
  • Be Generous. Penguin males collect pebbles for females. Male magpies scout out shiny objects. For human men, buying a drink is a good start.
  • Smell Good. Female pigs emit a scent that makes males drool (literally). Moths emit pheromones. No need to run to Perfumania, however: Your natural sweat tells prospective partners whether your immune systems are similar.
  • Employ the Glance. Surprisingly, this rarely works in the animal world, where eye contact is perceived as a threat. For humans, it's cultural: New Yorkers give direct looks, for example, "while Parisian women are thought of as being easy if they look at a man they like, so they show interest by averting their eyes," one anthropologist says.
(Read more flirting stories.)

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