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Male wolf spiders cannibalise older females, scientists in Uruguay have discovered. In several species, female spiders are known to eat males, but this is the first time biologists have seen the roles reversed in the wild.
The male spiders were observed mating with virgins and eating older, less reproductively successful females. Researchers suggest that harsh habitats force males to prey on females for food.
Their findings were published in the Biological Journal of the Linnean Society. The species in question, Allocosa brasiliensis, is a nocturnal wolf spider found in South America’s sand dunes along riverbanks and the Atlantic Ocean coast.

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