Thursday, September 17, 2009

Finally, some (mantid) girls

In this picture, a female mantid (S. californica) is in the upper left corner of the doorway, and a male is approaching from the right. I watched them for a long time, until it got dark. When I went back to check on them later, the male was gone, and the female was across the porch. Mission aborted. (And no, I don't think she ate him. It was only about an hour since I had last checked on them. It would take longer than that for her to eat him, she would have had a fat belly afterwards, and there would have been parts leftover.)

This is the female from the door. I call her "camo girl" because of her coloring.

Nice striping on her forelegs.

Interesting mottling on her abdomen.

This is a huge S. limbata I also found on my porch.

Her wings

Mantids can be incredibly photogenic. I don't know any other bugs that can look you in the eye (or the camera lens) like they can. But this girl looks deceptively charming. Trust me, in between these shots, she was wild, running around and jumping all over the place. At one point, when I tried to pick her up, she even flung herself down on her back and played dead for a few moments.
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