Currently viewing the category: "Preying Mantis"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Cocoon?
Geographic location of the bug:  Aripeka Preserve, FL
Date: 01/02/2018
Time: 06:13 AM EDT
Saw this during a recent hike in Central FL, Gulf Coast. It looks distinctive, but I’m stumped…
Thanks in advance, and happy new year!
How you want your letter signed:  Frank

Mantis Ootheca

After a bit more Googling and brainstorming, I located some photos of very similar looking structures that had been ID’d as some type of mantis egg case. Am I in the right track?

Dear Frank
Your googling provided you with the correct information.  This is a Mantis ootheca or egg case, and it looks to be that of a native species, probably the ootheca of a Carolina Mantis which is pictured on the Bug of the Week site.  The ootheca of a California Mantis looks quite similar.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Small non-flying mantid in the Oregon high desert
Geographic location of the bug:  Ochoco National Forest, Oregon, USA
Date: 12/30/2017
Time: 07:17 PM EDT
Greetings,
I found this mantid about an hour after the Great American Eclipse ended (mid-day) on August 21st, 2017. The location was the Oregon Star Party in the Ochoco National Forest, Oregon, USA at 44.298775°N 120.141648°W. The altitude was about 5,000 ft and the terrain was the high desert of central Oregon (open rocky area surrounded by forest).
The mantid did not fly. It skittered along the ground very quickly and was difficult to keep up with. I have been unable to find any information on a mantid that lives in the high desert of Oregon. As you can see it was very small. Maybe an inch long.
Thank you!
(I got an “entity too large” the first time I submitted this so here we go with cropped pics)
How you want your letter signed:  Tommy

Agile Ground Mantid

Dear Tommy,
Based on this BugGuide image, we are quite confident that this is a Ground Mantid in the genus
Litaneutria, and according to BugGuide, they are “Less than 35mm long.”  Of the species Litaneutria minor, BugGuide notes:  “In Canada: known only from the dry grasslands of British Columbia in the extreme southern Okanagan Valley near Oliver and Osoyoos.  In the U.S.: widespread; from Colorado and Arizona to Mexico, northwest to California, north to Dakota, and occasionally to Texas.”  BugGuide also recognizes:  “Very difficult to capture.”  The species is pictured on the Electronic Atlas of the Wildlife of British Columbia.  According to Good Garden Bugs:  “Ground mantids are unique in that instead of adopting the typical sit-and-wait predatory strategy of most mantids, these active hunters stalk their prey on the ground. … Litaneutria minor is commonly called the agile ground mantid because they can be found running swiftly along the ground in search of prey.  They are found in the sesert southwest, eastern California, Oregon and Washington and are 3/4 tp 1 1/4 inches (2 to 3 cm) in length.  They are also found in southwestern Canada and are the only native Canadian mantid.”  This is not only our first posting of the New Year, we are also making it the Bug of the Month for January 2018.

Agile Ground Mantid

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Praying mantis
Geographic location of the bug:  Oahu, Hawaii,  USA
Date: 12/29/2017
Time: 12:57 AM EDT
Hello I was wondering what type of mantis these are. I have searched your website and haven’t found it exactly. Using google images I’ve determined it is in the hierodula genus but not the exact species. In the past week I have found five or six of them all of them being female and I have not found any males in all the time I’ve lived here so I am curious if they are parthengenic. Thank you in advance for helping me
How you want your letter signed:  Colin

Giant Asian Mantis

Dear Colin,
One of the biggest problems with trying to identify Insects and Arthropods sighted in Hawaii is that many if not most creatures, especially on Oahu, are introduced from other parts of the world.  Based on this FlickR image from Hong Kong, we believe you have correctly identified the genus
Hierodula.  This unidentified individual from Hawaii on Leigh Hilberts site also looks very much like your individual.  Mantidforum does picture males from this genus, so we do not believe you have a parthenogenic species.  It is more likely you have not encountered males that generally do not live as long as female Mantids.  Your submission is our first new posting since our editorial staff returned from holiday.

Giant Asian Mantis

Comment from Brian Fridie on Facebook:  Hierodula patellifera. I would love it I could help in correctly IDing many of the mantids on your site.

We would love to take advantage of Brian’s offer.  In the future, please post a comment on the actual posting and we can include corrections and identifications on our site.  The editorial staff does not communicate via Facebook.

Giant Asian Mantis

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Eggbound California Mantid
Location:  Mount Washington, Los Angeles, California
Date:  November 11, 2017
We have been posting images of the female California Mantis that lived on our porch light for much of the early autumn season, including the 25,000th Posting on our site.  She continued to thrive on the insects attracted to the porch light, and three weeks later we posted an image of her devouring a mature Bush Katydid.  Two weeks later, we arrived home and she was not on the light, but she was perched below on the top of the broom handle, but something was clearly wrong.  Her abdomen had burst and we saw what we at first thought might be larvae of a parasite, but we later presumed were her unlaid eggs, but what caused this trauma?  Perhaps she fell from the light and burst open when she hit the ground.  We suspected she would soon die, and we put her on a camelia in the garden.  When we checked on her progress later in the evening, we found her bent double, licking her wound.

Wounded Female California Mantis

The next morning the Argentine Ants had discovered her and were crawling on her legs.  We knew she would lose that encounter, so we moved her to a potted willow where she lived a few more days and eventually vanished, only to be discovered clinging to the side of the house, dead, her eggs never laid.  We put her body in a protected location and we wonder if though unlaid, perhaps her eggs might hatch next spring, protected from the elements by her body instead of a frothy ootheca.

Injured Female California Mantis

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Some kind of Mantis
Geographic location of the bug:  Colombia, South America
Date: 12/06/2017
Time: 06:37 PM EDT
Hey bugman!
Once again, another bug fella just flew through my window, but this is the rarest (for me, at least) yet! I know it’s some kind of Praying Mantis but it is really small. Like less than one inch.
P. S. Sorry for the low quality pics, the little guy was flying really fast.
How you want your letter signed:  Stranded, Daniel

Mantis or Mantispid???

Dear Daniel,
Had you not mentioned the small size, we would have agreed that this is a species of Mantis, and we are still categorizing it as such, but we now question that it might be an unrelated predator that resembles a Mantis that is known as a Mantispid or Mantisfly.  Your individual appears as though the wings are in the rest position with only one upper wing on top, covering the other three wings.  Mantispids generally have two upper wings that meet in the middle when at rest.  Perhaps Cesar Crash will have knowledge of South American Mantids that are very small.

Mantis or Mantispid???

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Unusual mantid
Geographic location of the bug:  San Antonio, Tx
Date: 11/19/2017
Time: 06:58 PM EDT
We are having unusual weather (albeit weather varies by the hour here!) and a cold front blew through yesterday. I returned home this afternoon to this beautiful specimen outside my garage. This is not the normal plains mantid I am used to seeing around my house, and am marveling at how much larger it appears! Do you have any basic identification to send me to look at so I can tell my son a little about it?
How you want your letter signed:  Bug lover

Texas Unicorn Mantis

Dear Bug lover,
We believe based on this and some other BugGuide images, that this is a male mantis in the genus
Stagmomantis, and there are several members of the genus found in Texas.  This is a native genus, and compared to introduced species like the Chinese Mantis and the European Mantis, it is much smaller in size.  Furthermore, the males are smaller than the females.  We do not know the “plains mantid” to which you refer.  Can you please be more specific about the “plains mantid”?

Correction:  Texas Unicorn Mantis
We received a comment from Michael correcting our initial identification.  Enlarging the head revealed the “horn” we originally missed.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination