Weird Nature
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Wacky And Totally Weird Facts About Insect Sex

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It's a question you may never have considered: do insects have sex? The short answer is yes. The long answer is that, since insects can be mesmerizing, weird, and completely dangerous, insect sex is just as insane. The insect kingdom is a place with little sympathy or romance (with some notable exceptions), but it's also completely fascinating. If you thought your personal life was complicated, these little guys have so much to contend with. The circle of life definitely is not fair.

As horrible as intimacy in the insect kingdom can get, it's so alien that you can't help but be interested. How do bugs have sex? The insect world might just be the only place where you'll find males with exploding junk and females who bite the heads off their lovers. It certainly has more violence and intrigue than most daytime television, and the stakes are the continuation of a species. So, check out the wild facts below and think next time before you reach for the fly swatter.

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  • This Insect Has A Stunt Member

    Photo: James Lindsey at Ecology of Commanster / Wikimedia Commons / CC BY-SA 2.5

    The earwig has a second member, even though the female only has one vagina. So, why the spare? Because the first one is designed to snap off in case anything goes wrong. Most of that time, when it snaps off it's still inside the female. 

  • Red Velvet Mites Make 'Love Gardens'

    You've seen these guys all over the place, but unless you've read the fantastic Oatmeal comic you probably don't know about their romantic lives. In order to attract a female, a male builds a "love garden" made of sticks, plants, and held together with sticky ejaculate. After constructing his shrine of love, he leaves a trial of silk and secretions to make sure the females find him. If they do, he breaks into a love dance. If the female is impressed, then she'll impregnate herself with his ejaculate. Fun fact: if a male mite finds the love garden of another male, he'll trash it completely and cover everything with his sperm. 

  • Beetles Have Spiked Members

    Video: YouTube

    Male beetles have been known to injure the female beetles who are unlucky enough to mate with them. The reason for this is, apparently, that the puncturing action allows for more sperm to travel up the female. The male's sperm also effects the female's fertility, and the wounds allows those chemicals to directly interact with the female's bloodstream. 

  • The Scorpion Fly Is All About Spit

    There are many criteria certain insects use to choose their mates – including a nice wad of spit. When a male scorpion fly is trying to attract a female, he coughs up a secretion from his salivary glands that she can eat. While she's chowing down, the guy will do his thing until she gets bored and/or full and decides to leave. The male will then gather whatever is left from his wad of spit and use it to attract the next female passing by.