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And you thought the Praying Mantis is always praying

The Praying Mantis has lived among us for centuries. Their prettiness and mystique stirs our curiosity. Long and slender, quick yet graceful they stand on top of the insect world as regal creatures of the fields even in all their many colors of camouflage.

A praying mantis, or praying mantid (plural), is the common name for an insect of the order Mantodea. The word ‘mantis’ is actually derived from the Greek word ‘mantis’ for prophet or fortune-teller.

A praying mantis praying is a wonder to behold.  It has been one of nature’s signature symbol of spiritual connection between earth creature and creator. Graceful though it may appear, its hunting speed is so fast that The motion is barely a blur if it is perceived at all.

–       They are able to turn their head 180 degrees for excellent vision and hearing. It has two large compound eyes and three other simple eyes located between them.

–       The Praying Mantis has excellent eyesight and can see up to about 50 feet away.

–       Praying Mantid are masters of camouflage. They are great dancers. See the slideshow of photos taken by Igor Siwanowicz, a world famous naturalist photographer.

–       About 2,000 species’ of mantids worldwide are found in Asia alone.

–       It is believed that the female mantis sometimes (less than 30% of times) eats the male after (or during) mating since the protein helps in egg development.

–       The Praying Mantis is actually more closely related to the cockroach than to grasshoppers.

–       Mantids are strictly carnivorous.

–       In China, roasted praying mantis eggs were eaten to treat bedwetting.

–       The Praying Mantis will sway like a leaf; mesmerize its prey, while it gracefully moves towards its victim. With lightning speed it will strike and kill.

–       They eat while their prey is still alive!

–       One of its favorite preys is the humming bird! The Praying Mantis has not only great speed (1/20 of a second), but incredible strength too.
It usually eats the humming bird, keeping it dangling from its powerful grip and incredible strength.

–       There is a school of Martial Arts in China called Mantis Kung Fu (not correct name), the specialty being speed but with grace.

Patric Rozario

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