London, June 4 : Mating dance can sometimes prove fatal for male wolf spiders, suggests a new study.
Male wolf spiders often wave their front legs to attract a mate, which also sometimes attract predators.
The study led by Chad Hoefler from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio suggests that this risky behaviour might be the very reason females find it so irresistible, as strongest males are able to survive the dangers of a flamboyant courtship.
For the study, Hoefler starved one group of male spiders and fed the second group with crickets.
He later filmed how they fared in a series of trials inside a tiny arena.
The spiders were then presented with a female. The findings showed that well-fed males raised their legs eight times as often as their hungry spiders.
When the well-fed males were left alone with a large predatory spider they were twice as likely to escape its clutches.
The majority of the strong males managed to flirt with the female and escape before the predator got them, while the poor conditioned spiders died.
"After mating with a male who naturally waves his legs a lot, females lay more eggs, their spiderlings hatch sooner and they survive better," New Scientist quoted Hoefler, as saying.