I love squids, octopus, cuttlefish and any other cephalopod really. I think it’s because they can camouflage and change colours, they’re flexible and can fit into jars and also, because they appear to be quite smart.
But of all the stuff that I’ve learnt about cephalopods over the years, their karma sutra-inspired sex acts take the cake. And squids, well their sex life is even more fascinating. It doesn’t involve a penis, nor any penetration, neither the male or female actually enjoy it and the sex only ever happens once in their life time. And off the bat, things get a bit S&M…
Now in case you were never subjected to the tortures of a Birds and the Bees talk, or never watched ‘Where Did I come From?’, I will summarise baby making. In traditional human sex, the male gets aroused, does the dirty, ejaculates, the sperm fertilises the egg and wham bam, eventually you get a baby (feel free to use that explanation on your future children). Not so in the squid. In fact, male squids don’t really have penises and there is no actual penetration or ejaculation. Instead, male squids have packets of sperm that they develop over a lifetime. When mature, they will have developed what is essentially a machine gun with a large supply of spermmunition.
When a mummy squid and a daddy squid eventually find each other, the mating begins with a kiss (awww). But in humans where kisses are light and affectionate, the kisses of squid are vicious and draw blood. The male uses its beak to make deep incisions and gashes over the female’s body. Once the incisions are made, the male uses an appendage to machine gun fellatio his sperm into the holes. Upon a successful deposition of genetic material, he’s done, never to mate again…ever! Yes, for one whole lifetime, all the male squid does is rip a hole in his female companion and dump his junk. But don’t think that he’s just a wife beater or something. Female squid are pretty large and if the male is getting too frisky, she might just eat him. Yum!
But anyway, once the sex is over, the actual baby making can happen. As the sperm lies external to the female squid’s actual eggs, she must do all the fertilisation herself. In a rather inelegant fashion, she grabs her eggs and brushes them over the incisions in her body, making contact between ova and sperm. 9 months later (or however long it takes), you get baby squid. Ladies and gentlemen, the beauty of mother nature.
Now let’s just summarise the squid’s sex life once more:
1. Boy meets Girl
2. Boys cuts gigantic hole in Girl
3. Boy deposits sperm into gigantic hole
4. Girl rubs eggs on sperm
5. The End, never to be repeated again
It’s a confronting and obtuse way to reproduce but if it works for them, it works for them.