Praying Mantis Sex: How Often Do the Females Eat the Males?



Screen shot 2013-01-13 at 4.41.45 PMYou may have heard that the female praying mantis eats its mate post-copulation. Fortunately for the male praying mantis, this doesn’t seem to be the case – at least in every instance:

“By most estimates, sexual cannibalism by praying mantis females occurs less than 30% of the time outside the lab. Those are pretty good odds for the fellows. Praying mantis sex, it turns out, is really a rather romantic series of courtship rituals that typically ends satisfactorily and safely for both parties involved.”


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About Dr. Debby Herbenick

Dr. Debby Herbenick

Dr. Debby Herbenick is a sex researcher at Indiana University, sexual health educator at The Kinsey Institute, columnist, and author of five books about sex and love. Learn more about her work at