The female mantis “murders” its mate and eats the male’s head during mating. For some mantises, eating a male’s head is part of the mating process, not a sign of cruelty. This allows males to ejaculate more quickly. Such cannibalism is rare, between 5% and 31% of the time. The female mantis eats her husband’s head because she is hungry and needs energy to survive. Remember, most animals can only keep their populations going by mating, and dead male mantises do nothing to keep them going. In the absence of cannibalism, mantises perform mating rituals that are actually romantic, such as mating dances and stroking their tentacles.
Female mantises bite off male mantises’ heads when they mate