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Mantis Montage

29 Nov
Chinese mantis first instar nymphs (Tenodera sinensis).

Chinese mantis first instar nymphs (Tenodera sinensis).

Here’s some video clips of the Chinese mantises I reared out of an egg case early this year.  I enjoyed watching them hunting fruit flies, grooming, fighting, and molting.  These are pictures of mantises in the first instar, or first molt, not long after hatching.  At this age they’re tiny and fairly vulnerable, but also fast and terrific jumpers.  I’ll include some pictures of adults in the next post.

Mantises are a lot of fun to raise as pets.  They’re low maintenance, fun to observe, and one of the more charismatic and interactive insect pets–they’ll turn their heads back and forth to watch you and even take bits of food offered with tongs.  In the spring you can find mantis egg cases (ootheca) for sale on a variety of garden websites as well as eBay.