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Thistle Mantis with Prey

Blepharopsis mendica


very well camouflaged mantis, about 3.5 cm in length, feeding on a butterfly (Pontia sp.); "A mantis will catch prey items and grip them with grasping, spiked forelegs. The praying mantis usually holds its prey with one arm between the head and thorax, and the other on the abdomen. Then, if the prey does not resist, the mantis will eat it alive. However, if the prey does resist, the mantis will often eat it head first, some species of mantises being more prone to the behaviour than others. Unlike sucking predatory arthropods, a mantis does not liquefy prey tissues or drain its prey's body fluids, but simply slices and chews it with its mandibles as convenient, often from one end." ~wiki


spotted on an Iphiona sp. plant in a coastal desert wadi

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Bernadette S
Bernadette S 7 years ago

Thanks, Mona!

Mona Pirih
Mona Pirih 7 years ago

Wow.. Very nice series..

Bernadette S
Bernadette S 7 years ago

Thank you so much for your help, ForestDragon! :-)

ForestDragon 7 years ago

Bernadette, I think there is a very good chance that this is Blepheropsis mendica as you thought. Nymphs can be more difficult but I think this species is pretty unique looking. I think you are safe to ID this little nymph as that species.
A captive nymph:
Another site with captive information:

Bernadette S
Bernadette S 7 years ago

Thank you all! It was amazing to watch. I think he offered me a bite. ;-)

mcaul6515 7 years ago

Beautiful! It looks like a flower!

JC_Forester 7 years ago

Nice series!

Daniel Rowson
Daniel Rowson 7 years ago

Wow, a pretty gruesome series you have there! Amazing mantid - nice spotting :)

Bernadette S
Spotted by
Bernadette S

جنوب سيناء, Egypt

Spotted on May 18, 2013
Submitted on May 18, 2013

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