According to his creepy nature, spider sex is strange and a bit gruesome, but that is of course the nature of spider reproduction. Most spiders engage in sexual cannibalism, in which one spider kills and eats the other immediately after mating. This act of violence can increase the chances of the male spider succeeding in reproduction, as female spiders can choose the sperm that fertilise their eggs and they may eat it rather than mate with another male. Once mating takes place, male spiders develop methods to improve their chances of reproductive success. In some cases, female spiders even eat a male spider as part of their mating ritual. After having a meal, the male pulls his pedipalps aside and leaves them behind to use as a plug to prevent other spiders from mating with the female. Other spiders use these secretions to seal the genital opening of a female spider for the same reason. A description of a macabre spider mating would be careless to forget what happens after successful reproduction. But it's not all fun and games, as the story of this macabre pairing shows. Because mating with spiders is so dangerous, many species have developed sophisticated methods to approach sex with spiders with care. Male spiders, for example, use a mating dance, tapping a web on the ground to placate female spiders before mating. Other spider-free species offer females tasty flies that are carefully wrapped in silk to divert the female's attention during mating, but if the flies are not available, a sneaky male spider wraps a pebble around the fly's neck. H. sadistica approach follows an elaborate pattern during mating, in which the male taps, subdues and then wraps around the female until the sex organs are correctly positioned from above. The two take turns by pricking and injecting sperm into one side, creating two neat rows of holes in the abdomen. While this traumatic insertion may seem strange to some, sex in the spider world is actually quite extreme, according to a recent study from the University of California, Davis. We already know that the front legs of the females are covered in silk before sex, which temporarily paralyzes them. Interestingly, a 2011 study found that this silk is so thick that female spiders are likely to react by simply touching their suitors. Male spiders tie their partners with silk strings before and after sex and then wrap the silk around their legs. The silk threads can even be spun in the air, and an essay in Plos One, the journal of discoveries, entitled Coy Males and Seductive Females, describes a typical sexual encounter between two spiders. He set out to test this theory by weaving orb spiders together in a room and waiting to see what happens. The males were then hurled against the walls of the room by a pair of female spiders, each with a different silk thread on their back. The study's findings confirm the theory that males between the two sexes are more coarse, but the gruesome story is not the only example of sexual cannibalism in which a spider eats its partner during copulation. The new study found that males of two different spider species, Dolomedes dolomores, mate with only one female and females with two males. In both spider species, the male appears to disappear for internal reasons after the female has killed it, but there is no evidence that the unfortunate fellow was killed by his female. Females of the fish spiders will cannibalize males after their death, and eating one male can reduce a female's capacity to accommodate other males by increasing the likelihood that only the dead male will produce his offspring. Alternatively, serving a wedding meal can help feed the female, leading to healthier offspring, according to a study in the Journal of Evolutionary Biology. In fact, the female spider feeds more than twice as often as the male, according to a study in the Journal of Evolutionary Biology. Despite the brutality of mating in the animal kingdom, romance is not dead, and sexual cannibalism can often give both men and women something to cheer about. Wolves, spiders and tarantulas, which often feed on males before sexual intercourse, produce so many offspring that when they finally make up their minds to mate, they forget about them. Females of praying mantises, for example, kill their partners before they are ready to mate, according to a study from the University of California at Berkeley. In some cases, the males offer themselves to their freshly impregnated partners in exchange for food. In praying mantises, the death of a male often means the survival of the reproducing female and in some cases even the life of her offspring. Male spiders have developed a variety of movements, tactics and rituals to ensure their survival during sex. Male spiders increase their chances of having an unpaired female by smelling each other. The female's web silk has such a strong scent that the male can apparently feel whether it is a virgin or not.