"..a bardy view!"

The Malabar Spider – Courage without Balls….

Malabar spider"Australians wouldn't give a XXXX for a Seahorse's Willy!" was a Bardy post I wrote in 2009.

It was a lighthearted observation about the reproductive abilities of Seahorses, and for reasons at the time I linked it to the famous advertising slogan of Castlemaine Beer: "Australians wouldn't give a….etc" 

The female seahorse has it's own penis, which she uses to deposit her eggs into the belly of the male, who then secretes sperm to achieve external fertilisation and…..anyway, you'll have to read that post to see where it was going.

So I begin the new year with another observation along similar lines (as reported in the New Scientist) about a spider which, after impregnating it's mate, leaves it's testicles behind in the female's copulatory opening

Although the male Malabar spider loses its genitals after hanky panky, it doesn't grow a new pair, and in fact makes it even more aggressive and a better fighter.

Nephilengys malabarensis (to give it's official name) is regarded as a eunuch, and because it's already lost its balls, it has little left to lose in a fight. Indeed, a rival male can remove the testicles left behind in a female from a previous lothario, and impregnate her again.

Naturally the original male Malabar who did the deed is somewhat peeved about this, after all, his mate has got it's balls, and he has a desire to protect both them and her. He's not too pleased when some well hung rival comes along and struts his stuff – so he will fight tooth and nail to ward him off. 

It appears a perfectly natural reaction when you think about it. 

It's difficult to disseminate scientific papers into simple English, but the bottom line is that during copulation the male Malabar experiences total castration, but does so to plug it's mate to prevent her from having subsequent relationships.

It seems like a rather drastic method of birth control, particularly as the ball-less male must spend the rest of his life fighting off horny rivals. Still, this makes him focused and much stronger. The spin off is that there is a well ordered population control of the species.

Now, I'm not advocating that this method should be used in the Human world, but the average man may well think twice before he rampantly deposits his sperm with impunity if at risk of losing his testicles. Although many men would argue that their wives have already got them by the balls anyway.

No, this is just an observation, and now that we have reached a global population of 7 Billion perhaps we should consider the webs we weave, and look at the Malibar spider to suggest ideas.

Maybe we should keep this knowledge safely tucked away in our trousers for the time being.


January 6, 2012 - Posted by | Conservation, Culture, Education, Humour | , , , ,

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