Monday, July 23, 2012
I saw dozens of mantises in the garden this weekend. I did some research out of curiosity and found out that this is a European mantis, "Mantis religiosa" of the insect Order "Mantodea" which consists of approximately 2,300 described species. These were originally introduces to the Americas in 1899 on a shipment of nursery plants. They have now spread far and wide and are available through mail order as a form of organic pest control. Mantis are carnivorous and will only eat meat that they have caught themselves. Some of the larger species have been known to prey on small scorpions, lizards, frogs, birds, snakes, fish, and even rodents. I think they look cool and am glad they are patrolling my garden. This is a male, the females are green. His name is Bitey ClawFingers. It goes without saying...... Dara named him.