Monday, August 04, 2008

Praying Mantis

What is a Praying Mantis? The praying mantids, or praying mantises, are carnivorous insects that belong to the family. There are about 2,000 species of mantids. The biggest praying mantises are the Tenodera and the Archimantis, which are six inches long! The smallest praying mantis is the Bolbe pygmaea, which is only 2/5 of an inch, or one-centimeter. Unbelievably, some scientists agree the mantis is closely related to the cockroach. The name "mantis" comes from the Greek word for 'prophet' or 'soothsayer.' The Carolina mantid is a common insect of Eastern United States. The European and Chinese species were introduced to the Northeastern United States about 75 years ago as garden predators in hopes of overtaking the native pest population.


dot said...

What nice photos! I love the red of the flowers and the green mantis together. Beautiful!!

Lilli & Nevada said...

now that is a great Photo and information something i didn't know

Alyssa said...

Love those mantis pictures! I haven't seen one for quite a few years. They must be rather secretive as well as blending in with foliage almost completely. You were lucky he/she seems to have walked onto your porch.

P.S. Have you ever seen the kitchy '50s movie called "The Deadly Mantis!" ? It's about a giant killer mantis that the army has to deal with before it takes over the world! Very funny!