10 animal mothers that make the ultimate sacrifice

10 Animal Mothers That Make The Ultimate Sacrifice, Die After Birth

For some species bringing new life into the world also serves as a final act. Some animals starve to death shortly after birthing their young while others are eaten by their own young -- but these mothers make the ultimate sacrifice.

Click through for 10 animal mothers that die after giving birth.

10 animal mothers that make the ultimate sacrifice
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10 animal mothers that make the ultimate sacrifice

Number 10. North Pacific Salmon. The spawning process of the different species of these fish is an arduous one. First they swim, sometimes thousands of miles, to their own birthplace. They make nests until exhaustion overtakes them and often die after their eggs are laid. 

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Number 9. Mayflies. They live only to procreate and keep the family line going. After spending a year developing, the flies venture into the world and survive for only one day. They spend the whole time finding a mate and laying eggs. 

Photo credit: Getty

Number 7. Stegodyphus Spiders. These arachnids spend the early weeks of motherhood regurgitating their own food to provide nourishment to their hatchlings. After about a month, once her little ones are stronger, she ends up getting eaten by them. 

Number 8. Giant Pacific Octopus. Possibly the most dedicated procreator of all time, octopus moms lay eggs in special caves and then stay there for months on end until the babies emerge. During that time they don’t eat or move, and thus waste away. 

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Number 6. Longfin Eels. These New Zealanders die after spawning, but at least they live a long time beforehand. Mating is the last thing they do in their roughly 35-year lifespan. 

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Number 5. Praying Mantis. Reproduction for the mantis is pretty much a blood bath. The carnage begins when mating ensues, with the female biting off the male’s head. She then proceeds to eat the rest of him. After the work of laying eggs is done she, too, soon dies. 

Photo credit: Getty 

Number 4. Ticks. Like many other insects,  female ticks die after expelling their eggs. She doesn’t go out hungry, though, as fills up on host blood for about 24 hours before mating. 

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Number 3. Cecropia Moths. Not many young make it to adulthood, which, really for the species isn’t all that fabulous a time, anyway. Adult moths can’t eat, so they really only survive long enough to produce the next generation. 

Photo credit: Getty 

Number 2. Labord’s Chameleon. These lizards only live for about 5 months after hatching. During that time, they grow rapidly into adulthood, mate, and then die shortly after, succumbing to the harsh conditions of Madagascar’s dry season. 

Photo Credit: Getty 

Number 1.  European Glow Worms. In the beginning of their lives they have voracious appetites, but as they age their lust for slugs and snails wanes. By the time they reach childbearing age they have no appetite at all and starve to death shortly after birthing their young. 

Photo credit: Getty 


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