One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A highly venomous Australasian spider which is black with a bright red stripe down the back, closely related to the American black widow.
Latrodectus hasselti, family Theridiidae
- ‘From Sydney we have had the Sydney huntsman spider, the Australian redback spider, and the North American southern ring-necked snake.’
- ‘We considered female size, weight, condition and mating status as candidate traits for male preferences in redback spiders.’
- ‘Such a strategy has been identified in a range of animals, including the redback spider, house sparrow, and moth.’
- ‘Data from two observational field studies and one release experiment suggest that in the absence of cannibalism, male redbacks would expect fewer than one mating opportunity in a lifetime.’
- ‘If they are lucky, the former is part of the latter - female redbacks eat their male mates during copulation.’
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