The Cannibalistic Mating Ritual of the Praying Mantis

The Cannibalistic Mating Ritual of the Praying Mantis


The praying mantis appears to be such a zen
and calm creature. After all, the prayer is directly in it’s
name! But the praying is understandable considering
any sexual encounter for the male mantis, might be fatal. Praying mantis’ are characterized by the
unique and specialized behavior of sexual cannibalism. The sperm transfer process can be quite lengthy,
so this means that it’s important for a male to occupy his female partner’s’ attention
for as long as possible. More time equals more of his own sperm making
its way into her reproductive tract AND less time for other males to have a similar chance. And one good strategy to maximize his monopoly
on a female’s’ time is by letting her reach back, rip off his head, and begin to consume
it. Although in some cases a male might try to
escape, this may not be in his best biological interest. You see, while she is enjoying her appetizer,
his body continues to rhythmically pump sperm into her body. Once she’s done eating the head, she will
begin to consume the rest of his body, and all the while his sperm continues to perform
the only task that matters to his future biological existence. By the time a female has finished consuming
the male, there is a very good chance that a significant amount of his sperm is alive
and well in her sperm storage organ, and will be used to sire the next generation. Although it seems a rather severe way to attain
biological fitness, it makes sense seeing as many of these males will only ever get
a few chances at copulation during their lifetimes. Despite the fact that it’s a strategy unlike
anything close to what humans would encounter, it seems to work well for several species
of mantis across the world. I’m sure their future offspring would thank
them for taking one for the team. For more videos about animals that aren’t
made out of paper, check out this playlist from our friends at the Dodo. Don’t forget to subscribe, and keep coming
back to Seeker for more videos.

100 thoughts on “The Cannibalistic Mating Ritual of the Praying Mantis

  1. As an entomologist specializing in mantids, saddened by the misinformation by omission touted as objective science, irresponsibly teaching people.

    "Praying mantis" refers to a specific species, the European Mantis (Mantis religiosa), one of over 3,000 species.

    And sexual cannibalism only happens about 15% of the time in wild situations. The misconception that it's "common" came about around in the mid 1800's as a way to exotify the species, likely for funding. Scientists would force this behavior in lab settings to prove to their superiors that these "exotic" animals from the "orient" deserved to be studied and for that they needed money.

    It's lead to a longtime culture of fear of these animals, and to this day many people kill them on sight. There is countless media depicting them as monsters, and even campaigns using their image to advance misogyny. Just check this very comment section to see evidence of this.

  2. Hey lady? Hey the Seekerzz!
    When numbering everything and forgetting God and human-uniquenees.. you teach cruelty and destroy humanity! Are you enemies of "human-being/being a human"?
    ..
    In trance
    https://youtu.be/GFzvYakAgOY
    Are you drunk or on a drug.. or you're having a kinda Nirvana like that male Mantis and lecherously glutonous female one? Are you human or si what? What is your quantity holding worth of?
    ..
    Numbbborz and Numbbbon!
    https://youtu.be/J8fFVOoqepc
    ..
    Mein Teil (my piece of-in ordinance, function and integration)
    Hey numbbBon, bon apétite!
    https://youtu.be/PBvwcH4XX6U
    ..
    You are So intellectually Romantic leaning on and o'ferring numbers!
    https://youtu.be/qrO4YZeyl0I
    ..
    Your o'ffer is and has no good deal!
    Don't pay the FERryMan!
    https://youtu.be/lqZEp4Fb6qw
    ..
    There the men with those chocks are DA! Spasiva?
    https://youtu.be/0m7bHdcq87o
    ..
    Are you humans or so what?
    https://youtu.be/0755SXCTCN0
    ..
    Still on Numb'rzz?
    If yes, you are more dangerous and disgracing than a crock or a lion or a hyena! Look what your numbering manners bring to our world! You are worse than zombies within this numberings as if being in trance of tranquility or nirvana of going as a genius..

  3. It’s interesting to see how the female evolved in the evolution scale from being female praying mantis to the female human being or did they really evolve?

  4. Seems strange when there are some bugs that offer prey instead. If a few preying mantis' happened to stumble upon that method, or ended up copulating with a female that was already eating, they might not be consumed and might then have chances in the future to pass their DNA to more than one mate, giving them an advantage over other males and presumably increasing the likelihood of passing on their DNA.

  5. I learned it as "preying" mantis, although "praying" seems more popular; I still feel that "preying" is far more accurate for this predator which effectively preys but never prays.

  6. Why did I watch this video just before bed. Thanks, seeker, the cartoonish animation did not ease the horror of this video's subject…

    Nightmares in 3…2…1…

  7. This is portrayed in a completely demeaning way to men. I can't wait until the episode about the polygamist lion. With his harem of weak female lions. Each eager to accept every decision he makes, as the male lion.

  8. NO TF actually?! I already heard that the females eat their male partner(s) but I never knew that the female eats their heads first and the male's body still goes at it! LIKE TF?!

  9. what I want to know though is are they aware it's going to happen? like all these weird things like spiders and so on that have sex and kill their "mate". Does the fella know? because if i thought my girlfriend was going to kill me after/during sex I think I'd just settle for a wank.

  10. love praying mantises! they feel so cool when you hold them….we had a few almost drown in our pool-and rescued them…its cool to watch the clean the water off themselves…

  11. In captivity, they won't do this if you just keep them fed.. it's bad bug keeping if this happens. Also in the wild it only happens like 20% of the time or less… can't remember but it's not a common thing like this video makes it out to be.

  12. This channel is slowly becoming shit, buzzfeed 2.0 as someone in the comments mentioned and the reason i say this is because they left out one very very crucial point, this happens less than 20% of the time i.e only when the female preying mantis is starving and desperate for food otherwise its fine for the guy. Why did they leave this fact out? Did they wanna "empower" females? How come they said that its a good way for reproduction? Are they suggesting males are only good enough for reproduction then should be killed? These are only speculations but they do indicate that this channel might possibly be turning into buzzfeed 2.0

  13. Its 1:35 in the morning. Why the hell am I still on YouTube? How did I get here? I was watching a video about tigers, and now I'm watching mantid's have sex. Why the hell am i watching mantid's have sex??!

  14. now i know if i kill cockroach or zombie while its havin benny hill yakety sax there's a chance it will still pump to be remade

  15. Keep pushing, keep pushing, keep pushing, no matter what, keep pushing, as long as you still have " bullet"😂😂😂😂

  16. If she said um i cant eat you my throat is smaller so i just have to eat smaller bugs and he said um ok the children will say mm om dad what do babys come from?

  17. just so you know only about 25% of mating rituals results in the male mantis' death. It's not every time this happens.

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