Sunday, March 14, 2010

FDC fron Vietnam/FDC du Vietnam

Praying mantises/Les mantoptères

Praying Mantises or Praying Mantids are carnivorous insects that live in warm areas, camouflaging them among plants. There are about 2,000 species of mantis. Most mantises are pea green or brown. Like all insects, they have 6 jointed legs, 2 antennae, large compound eyes, a hard exoskeleton and a three-part body (head, thorax, and abdomen). Mantis can rotate their triangular-shaped head in almost a full circle. Most adult mantises are from 2 to 6 inches (5-15 cm) long. Females are larger than the males.

The natural life span of a Praying Mantis in the wild is about 10-12 months, but some have been known to live up to 14 months in captivity. The males sometimes die suddenly 2 or 3 weeks after mating.

Praying Mantises eat flies, aphids, moths, butterflies and many other insects (including other mantids). Praying Mantises are useful in gardens, since they control the insect population. They will only eat live insects.

Praying Mantises are eaten by bats, birds and wasps.

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