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The Process of Suicidal Reproduction in Animal World

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In this article we are going to talk about sexual intercourse that would cause the male to end up dead as they were going to be killed/eaten by females, post-sexual intercourse. I guess, nothing sounds sexier than knowing that you are going to lose your head, humping females to ensure the continuity of your species. If you think we have no such thing as suicidal reproduction among humans, you might want to think that again. Of course, we have nothing even remotely the same as what some of the animals have been through but in ritual cannibalism in some of the tribes, women do eat men to replenish their soul which they believe have been stolen by the Mother (a spirit) causing infertility, reduced milk production, and erectile dysfunction.

Now, some of the animals listed below have been covered in my previous series called the “Animal Series”. It is worth noting that, this particular series is incapable of listing all of the animals which practised or rather experienced suicidal reproduction and the selection was made based on popularity rating (how frequent other academicians are discussing those animals) as they represent the bulk of animals which live to accomplish one purpose; ensuring the continuity of their species.

For now, the most popular animal which has been sitting at the top of attention list when it comes to suicidal reproduction is Antechinus species, marsupials which have sex and unfortunately for their males species, died of extreme exhaustion. Even if their female species did not eat them, sperm competition between fellow male Antechinuses has driven them to be extremely competitive, having sex for more than 14 hours straight without rest. Among all animals which experienced suicidal reproduction that kinda one-sided, Labord’s chameleon is a great example whereby both of the genders of the species died after reproduction, leaving their eggs behind, tended only by nature. They have been threatened to extinction for a very long time and that doesn’t interrupt their unusual habit of killing each other during sexual intercourse. Before we discuss some interesting facts related to Labord’s chameleon, let’s talk about one of the most popular misconceptions among people regarding why chameleons would change their colour relative to the background of a specific habitat. If I ask a few people “why chameleon change their colours?”, I think most of them would guess, it is to avoid predators and they have to blend in with the environment to escape death especially if the predator has a set of good vision. It’s their survival instinct and if a certain chameleon has a good skill of “camouflaging” themselves with the environment, the better chances they have to survive.

Well, for some species of chameleon, camouflaging themselves with the environment can easily be their speciality to avoid natural predators but the primary purpose for the colour changes generally are to impress female chameleons for reproductive purposes. Despite making it difficult for them to be seen, they often change colour which would make them visible relative to the surrounding so that the female would see them clearly than any other potential mates. It’s like a colour changing contest between males to attract females attention; I guess we can guess how many times they would move their skin-embedded nanocrystals to reflect light producing certain colours so that they would be visible to the female’s eyes; to put it rather simply, it’s a lot.

It’s practically difficult for researchers to find an adult Labord’s chameleon as most of them died young, fighting during sexual intercourse, leaving their eggs behind which would hatch in 8 months time in a random environment. If you can find one, I bet it will be a juvenile chameleon and some journals even stated that Labord’s chameleons have the shortest lifespan among all chameleons (around 2 months), spending their time mostly as an egg rather than an actual chameleon.

Male Labord’s chameleons have a quite distinct physical characteristic compared to a female. Even though in some articles, they have been discussing how both of the genders will die, generally, the female will die later than the male. I mean, they do need to find a suitable place to lay off her eggs and then succumb to any wounds inflicted during the scratching-biting sexual intercourse. The competition to mate with each other is quite fierce and sometimes, a male Labord’s chameleon died after fighting its competition rather than love-making session. Unlike any other animals, even the weakest Labord’s chameleon wouldn’t back down from a good fight. They can get violent and trust me if the fight or the love-making itself did not kill them, often, the consequence of their aggression (hormonal exhaustion often referred to as extreme adrenal fatigue) would kill them

Whether it sounds grim or romantic, eating its own partner by going for its head first is the most preferred method of killing practised by female praying mantises. The cannibalistic ritual practised by this particular animal is not without purpose, often male would be more sexually fierce once they were beheaded; just for a few minutes but aren’t that’s all that matters? It’s understandable how fierce the competition between fellow male praying mantises to propagate their generation by sneaking up on a female praying mantis. Usually, a single female praying mantis would be targeted by a few male praying mantises for reproductive purposes and if it sounds not at all appropriate, think about how they (female praying mantises) would enjoy eating a whole bunch of the male praying mantises while they were humping their sperm into the female’s reproductive tract. It has been embedded deep into the female’s instinct to always go for the head as the male’s reproductive organ is capable of operating even if the host has been killed (just for a moment). Some male praying mantises might be smart enough to avoid the fatal sexual ending, but it would only hinder the process of transferring their sperm to females which would be non-favourable for their own biological needs. Offering their head act as a distraction and the female would eventually stop refusing and start munching. Apart from that, female praying mantises would require a lot of energy as they start to produce eggs which would be derived from eating male praying mantises body parts. Any thought on that kind of ending? Even though it seems different, the example I have mentioned in my introductory statement regarding a tribe which has been eating males for specific purposes seem to coincide with the purpose of suicidal reproduction in animal’s kingdom. They need energy and probably nutrient to produce a high-quality offspring and in human, they speculated that eating a man would make the woman fertile. I dare anyone who is brave enough to set up a fertility clinic in the area inhabited by those tribes

There is a group of marsupial which bears the same sexual fate as Antechinuses called the phascogale. They would be involved in a deadly orgy, mating with each other for hours without resting and eventually died of over-exertion which lead to extreme physical and adrenal fatigue. This might be the most vicious animal among others who practised reproductive ritual in the animal kingdom if we consider what comes next after sexual encounters. They would suffer from the inside and extreme adrenal fatigue would have caused their immune system to shut down. I think you can guess what comes next; without a working immune system, they were prone to hundreds of infectious diseases that are capable of killing them in a matter of a week. Unlike Antechinuses, however, males are not sexually dominant. The female would only choose them based on several qualities that they perceived might have made it a successful reproductive session. Time is of the essence and it wouldn’t always be winter. For those who don’t follow, similar to Antechinuses sp. , phascogales would only breed during the winter possibly because there was a lack of foods and lots of time for carnal activities.

If we scan through all of the litters bred by the female phascogale, we would find that all of them derived from a different paternal origin which makes both of them (Antechinuses and phascogale) closely related; they are quite promiscuous but then again, most of the animals are.

Most of the animals known to practise/experience suicidal reproduction are either killed by the opposite sex or they just kill each other during intercourse but not for the dark fishing spider. A male dark fishing spider would meet his demise just by releasing their sperm which seems to trigger some kind of mechanism that would end their lives. A lot of experimental observations have been made but none of them revealed that the female spider killed the male, instead, they (male) will be dead right after intercourse while being attached to the female genitalia (that was awkward). They were eaten by the female afterwards, sure, but there wasn’t any form of killing attempt made by the female which beg the question, what’s killing the male dark fishing spider? It turns out, they were killed by their sexual organ which was inflated while they, were trying to transfer their sperm to the female’s sexual organ. For other species of spider, this organ can be deflated later after the sexual intercourse but not for this particular species of spider. Their sexual organ would expand irreversibly which caused it to experience an extreme shift of blood pressure, killing them in a matter of seconds. People would consider the act of dying at the female’s genitalia as accidental but the main reason for that is to reduce the chances of the female being mated by other males. It’s like saying “this girl is mine” while being dead. Of course, no one likes a hanging dead body attached to their genitalia so to remove the male, the female would eat them.

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The Process Of Suicidal Reproduction In Animal World. (2020, April 12). GradesFixer. Retrieved January 27, 2023, from
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