Wednesday, September 24, 2008

A Little Bug Porn

We seem to have praying mantis all over the garden this year. When they aren't chowing down on usually a beneficial bug, they're getting kinky with each other. I had always believed that the female praying mantis will eat the male after mating, but I guess that's not always the case.

I did a google and found this.
Although the praying mantis is known for its cannibalistic mating process in actuality it only occurs 5-31% of the time. Especially in laboratory conditions of bright lights and confinement, the female is more likely to eat the male as means of survival. "In nature, mating usually takes place under cover, so rather than leaning over the tank studying their every move, we left them alone and videotaped what happened. We were amazed at what we saw. Out of thirty matings, we didn't record one instance of cannibalism, and instead we saw an elaborate courtship display, with both sexes performing a ritual dance, stroking each other with their antennae before finally mating. It really was a lovely display". (7) There is one species, however, the Mantisreligiosa, in which it is necessary that the head be removed for the mating to take effect properly. (5) Sexual cannibalism occurs most often if the female is hungry. But eating the head does causes the body to ejaculate faster.

I wonder if the Mantisreligiosa males would really care for it to be done "properly" if they knew they were about to be beheaded? Maybe they know and it's just the price that the males pay if they want to lose their virginity?

It was an interesting read & can be found here. http://serendip.brynmawr.edu/exchange/node/1801

I'm not sure what happened to the skinny, little male. They were mating for hours and when I checked on them again, he was gone, but she looked rather pleased. I looked on the ground below for miscellaneous body parts expecting he was her lunch too. Didn't find anything so perhaps he will be one of those lucky ones to mate again.

2 comments:

  1. Carol Jean / LovethemsteiffOctober 2, 2008 at 1:02 AM

    Wow, that's some story. Yuck! Poor guy! CJ

    ReplyDelete
  2. I was bored, until i've found your blog, interesting posts

    ReplyDelete

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