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17 April 2014 12:48 pm ,
Vol. 344 ,
Officials last week revealed that the U.S. contribution to ITER could cost $3.9 billion by 2034—roughly four times the...
An experimental hepatitis B drug that looked safe in animal trials tragically killed five of 15 patients in 1993. Now,...
Using the two high-quality genomes that exist for Neandertals and Denisovans, researchers find clues to gene activity...
A new report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) concludes that humanity has done little to slow...
Astronomers have discovered an Earth-sized planet in the habitable zone of a red dwarf—a star cooler than the sun—500...
Three years ago, Jennifer Francis of Rutgers University proposed that a warming Arctic was altering the behavior of the...
- 17 April 2014 12:48 pm , Vol. 344 , #6181
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ScienceShot: Spider Foreplay
28 October 2011 11:53 am
Call it the insect version of foreplay. Like humans, tangle-web spiders (Anelosimus studiosus) engage in playful sexual behaviors that include courting and mock copulation, usually before the females are mature enough to mate. Researchers have found that the activity keeps females happy; they're more likely to mate and less likely to attack males when they're finally ready for sex. But foreplay may come with a cost for males. As the team reports online this month in Ethology, males that invest a lot of effort in fooling around with females may end up exhausted and thus less competitive when they need to fight rivals for a mate. So, at least for male spiders, foreplay doesn't always pay off.
See more ScienceShots.