• Weird Nature

Wacky And Totally Weird Facts About Insect Sex

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.

  • Honey Bees Lose Their Members After Mating

    Photo: Tanner Smida / Wikimedia Commons / CC-BY 4.0

    When bees mate, it's epic. First, a young queen flies away, leading every male in the area on a chase as they try to snag her in midair. But there's a catch: when a male bee ejaculates his member pops off and gets lodged inside the queen. That way, no other males can penetrate her again.

  • One Insect Produces Sperm Bigger Than Itself

    The Drosophila bifurca can produce a sperm the length of 2.3 inches long, which is 20 times longer than the fly it's coming from. If you're wondering how that's possible, it's because the fly's testicles weigh about 10% of the total fly. How do these giant sperm interact with the female? Like a giant ball of yarn that slowly unwinds. 

  • Flies Have Multidirectional Genitals

    Male flies have to be ready to mate at any angle since the female can, you know, fly. It's a tough job, but luckily male flies can twist their gonads anywhere from 90 to 360 degrees. If humans tried to do that, we'd most likely rip our spines apart.

  • Male Moths Can Smell Sex For Miles

    Male moths don't have noses, but they can still smell a female's sex hormone with their antennae. The problem is, once he smells her he has to track her down despite any changes in wind. He also has to beat out all the other males searching for her. Oh, and avoid spiders that know how to mimic the female's scent and catch unsuspecting males in their webs