Praying Mantis #3

a praying mantis, Mantidae, from Kajiado, Kenya. Photo © by Michael Plagens

Observed near Insinya, Kajiado, Kenya, Dec. 2014. Grassland/scrub habitat.

Praying Mantises are alert, visual predators. The head rotates freely by more than 180°, keeping the photographer, naturalist or potential victim in view. The first pair of legs, held as if the insect were praying, are set to snap and lethally retrieve an insect prey. This one is camouflaged to blend into the green vegetation upon which it hunts using a sit-and-wait method. The specimen shown here is a mature female that appears to be gravid with eggs ready to be deposited into an ootheca.

Mantidae -- Praying Mantis Family

More Information:

Kenya Natural History

Copyright Michael J. Plagens. Page created 14 July 2015