Researchers have found that, for male seed beetles with "torture phalluses", the longer and spinier the better. The "pretty mean" genital is covered in spines along its entire length and causes internal injury to the female beetles, who -- not too surprisingly -- are built with thick padding to withstand mating. (To get these pics of the toothy, horny beetle genitalia, the scientists pumped them up with a vacuum pump -- just like Austin Powers!)
Also in today's links: many more oddities of the animal kingdom.
Animal behavior: Male G. cancriformis spiders prefer to mate with virgins.
By Gunjan SinhaPosted 05.06.2002 at 6:26 pm 0 Comments
When a male spider of the species G. cancriformis goes a-courtin', it's in his evolutionary interest to choose a virgin. That's because a female's first mate almost always gets to fertilize her eggs, while subsequent males wind up with nothing to show for their ardor. Which made Todd Bukowski, an evolutionary biologist at the University of Arizona at Tucson, wonder: How good are these male spiders at spotting virgins?