Is it an established fact that cockroaches can survive decapitation? If so, can other insects do the same? How does insect anatomy allow this (if it is possible)?
Cockroaches can survive decapitation… for a short time. They don’t die immediately, and it’s not losing their head that kills them. They starve to death because they can’t eat without a mouth.
Wish I had a cite, but this was something I read long ago. I don’t know if it applies to any other insects.
Something to keep in mind about insects, is that thier “brain”, if it can be called that, is really just a spot on their body with a higher ceoncentration of nerves. Their vital fuinctions, like nutrient and oxygen distribution, don’t need the head to function, at least not on all insects.
Do a web search for “mike the headless chicken”
It’s not a cockroach, or even an insect, but I think you’ll enjoy the reading.
Many insects can survive decapitation indefinitely as long as food and water is provided artificially (through a feeding tube, for example) and dehydration through the neck is controlled. (Otherwise, they will eventually die from starvation, or more likely from water loss through the neck opening.) As others have said, the nervous system is much less centralized than in vertebrates, and respiration takes place through openings on the side of the body (spiracles) rather than via the head.
It is well known that female praying mantises often consume the male after mating. In some cases, they may begin to eat their partner even before copulation is finished, starting with the head. A male mantis is quite capable of continuing to copulate even after his mate has literally chewed his head off.
Must…resist urge…to make…oral sex joke…