Foreplay or Death

Oct 24, 2009 • News, Research

The female Australian redback spider is known for eating its suitors as a post-coital snack. What we didn’t know until recently is why the spider behaved in this way.

redbackApparently, it has to do with foreplay. According to research by Jeffrey Stoltz and Maydianne Andrade at the University of Toronto, a male redback has to vibrate the female’s web for 100 minutes before attempting to mate or the female will cannibalize the over-eager loser.

Boys, you should feel grateful today.

Thumbnail image by William. Information via Animal Planet.