Why Did the Male Preying Mantis lose his Head?

Subject:  Please ID bug
Geographic location of the bug:  Long Island NY
Date: 09/26/2021
Time: 08:03 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Hi,
I found this bug dead on my porch in Long Island, NY.
It is about 2.5 inches long.
Would you please let me know what type of bug this is?
Thank you very much!
How you want your letter signed:  Jim H.

Headless male Mantis

Dear Jim,
This is the body of a male Mantis, and considering that it is well documented that the female will eat the head of the male as he is mating with her.  Once he has initiated the mating and, if he is decapitated, he no longer has the instinct to escape danger, the coupling will continue for hours or possibly days.  We have images of decapitated male California Mantids mating in our archives.  Here is another.  We cannot be certain that a female Mantis caused this, it is our best guess, though we would not want to discount that there was another cause, possibly a predator.

Dear Daniel,
Thank you so much!!!
Take care,

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