Rare Mantis from Egypt: Heteronutarsus aegyptiacus

Subject: Desert runner
Location: White desert, Egypt
December 25, 2012 8:57 am
I encountered this creature in the Egyptian desert. It was about 3 centimeters long and running very fast, and I could only take one picture before it dissapeared. It looks like a nymph, but of what insect?
Signature: Theo Willems

Rare Egyptian Mantis

Hi Theo,
This looks to us like a Desert Pebble Mantis,
Eremiaphila zetterstedti.  Most Mantids lie in wait to ambush prey, but the Desert Pebble Mantis uses its chases its prey.  According to the Insect Store:  “They have incredible long legs which they use to run down their prey! Adults have tiny budwings because they never have the need to fly.”

Correction:  October 14, 2013
Draco wrote in to inform us that this is a rare Mantis,
Heteronutarsus aegyptiacus.

2 thoughts on “Rare Mantis from Egypt: Heteronutarsus aegyptiacus”

  1. This is even more amazing mantis, Heteronutarsus aegyptiacus, closely related to Eremiaphila genus. You can see that it only has 3 tarsomeres instead of 4 or 5, like all other mantises (hence the name). It is also much more rare than most of Eremiaphila species. Despite its immature looking, it is definitely an adult, probably male.


Leave a Comment