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Mantid Madness!

Joined
Apr 19, 2012
Messages
4,679
Location
Greeley, CO, USA
Almost exactly 4 weeks since it was laid, the R. basalis ooth hatched! There're a couple hundred little guys in there...
Rhombodera basalis by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
Rhombodera basalis by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr

A couple weeks to get them molting, and then hopefully I'll start selling them. Shockingly, the female has yet to produce a second ooth, and I'm uncertain as to why. The orchid female, meanwhile, just laid her third today (the first still has probably another 1-2 weeks before hatching).
 
Joined
Apr 19, 2012
Messages
4,679
Location
Greeley, CO, USA
3 new European mantids have joined my wild-caught male, now just to get the 2 females in mating condition...
Mantis religiosa by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
Mantis religiosa by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
Mantis religiosa by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
Additionally, finally found another male African Stick mantis, so hopefully I will get those guys breeding finally...also, the R. basalis nymphs have finally started molting to I2! The ooth sadly had a huge die-off, so aside from those I intend to keep I have a very limited number available, but hey, at least I have some to sell...
R. basalis by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
R. basalis by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
 
Joined
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4,679
Location
Greeley, CO, USA
She's old, but I'm still hoping for another ooth or two from this female.
Parasphendale agrionina by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
Why? Because the ooth that I originally purchased that came from her produced naught but this one little guy...
Parasphendale agrionina by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
Not from this female, but I did finally get what I hope is a fertile ooth from the stick mantids!
Heterochaeta orientalis by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
May need to mate this girl again...
Hierodula membranacea by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
Because her first ooth gave me 11 babies (9 of which have survived to I2), and I haven't yet seen hatching from the other ooth that should be ready at this point.
Hierodula membranacea by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
Also wish I had another male for this girl,
Rhombodera basalis by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
Because while I still have a handful of nymphs from her first ooth alive and well (and a trio still for sale),
Rhombodera basalis by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
A measly 8 nymphs hatched from the big second ooth
Rhombodera basalis by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
The only species that I can boast truly regular success with, the bark mantids, of which I have 2 females from I think my 3rd generation home-raised now adult:
Elmantis sp. female by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
Elmantis sp. female by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
Now, here's hoping similar success instead with my new panther mantids:
Tarachodula pantherina male by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
Tarachodula pantherina male by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
Tarachodula pantherina female by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
Tarachodula pantherina female by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
Tarachodula pantherina female by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
And my ghost mantids!
Phyllocrania paradoxa female by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
Phyllocrania paradoxa female by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
One very special green individual...
Phyllocrania paradoxa female by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
And my current only male... Phyllocrania paradoxa male by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
 
Joined
Apr 19, 2012
Messages
4,679
Location
Greeley, CO, USA
Had a stick mantis hatch! Sadly, only 9 made it out of the egg case, and only 5 have thus far survived...with these odds, I haven't bothered yet taking a photo of them. Additionally, for whatever reason I lost one of my panther mantids, and one of my only 2 males seems to be absolutely refusing to eat for no good reason, so I may have to rely on the one good male I've got.

Better news: all 4 ghosts are now actually at subadult! They're getting bigger than I thought they would...
Phyllocrania paradoxa by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
The male has a wicked pattern that none of the others emulate
Phyllocrania paradoxa by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
Phyllocrania paradoxa by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
Phyllocrania paradoxa by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
Greenie is developing multiple shades though
Phyllocrania paradoxa by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
Phyllocrania paradoxa by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
And one crappy shot of Tall Dark and Girlie through the side of her cage...
Phyllocrania paradoxa by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
 
Joined
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The female ghosts are adult! Greenie isn't all that green currently, but she'll probably color up again shortly
P. paradoxa by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
P. paradoxa by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
P. paradoxa by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
P. paradoxa by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
P. paradoxa by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
P. paradoxa by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
Sadly, the dark brown one had a mismolt, probably falling at some point and so ending up with both raptorial arms and two of her hind limbs not working at all. However, she is capable of being hand-fed (as I found out tonight), so perhaps once the male molts she might become a mother yet!
P. paradoxa by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr

And, still got some Giant Asians (one male, mostly females otherwise) going strong. Most weren't mated so they keep laying infertile ooths; ironically, the ones that did mate were far more reluctant to lay.
H. membranacea by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
 
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Joined
Apr 19, 2012
Messages
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The male ghost is an adult!
P. paradoxa male by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
P. paradoxa male by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
P. paradoxa male by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
And both the healthy females have now turned green
P. paradoxa "Greenie" by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
P. paradoxa "light brown female" (not anymore) by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr

The dark brown female is still brown though, still alive as well.
And, most important: last night I got the first successful pairing! Had the male with the former light brown female not 5 minutes and they were busy :p
 
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nepenthesl0ve

Supporter
Joined
Dec 24, 2018
Messages
281
I didn't even know keeping mantids was a thing but now I feel my CP hobby is tame haha. What beautiful creatures they are. I tried to get into ant farming couple years ago but my gf told me no freaking way ???:0o: Thanks for sharing!
 

DragonsEye

carnivorous plants of the world -- unite!
Joined
Nov 17, 2011
Messages
1,665
Location
Michigan
Very cool, Hawken! Love the more exotic looking mantids, but, alas, far too high maintenance for such a short-live creature. Will have to simply live vicariously through you. :D

That basalis really brings home to me the fact that mantids and roaches are related .... the "shield" of the thorax is so roach-like.
 
Last edited:
Joined
Apr 19, 2012
Messages
4,679
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Greeley, CO, USA
Very cool, Hawken! Love the more exotic looking mantids, but, alas, far too high maintenance for such a short-live creature. Will have to simply live vicariously through you. :D

That basalis really brings home to me the fact that mantids and roaches are related .... the "shield" of the thorax is so roach-like.

Most really aren't that high maintenance, and as most of them can last well over a year from their first nymphal stage (some of them two) I wouldn't call most of them short-lived either. The hardest thing about them is ordering or breeding insects to feed them, and in the case of dubia roaches, waxworm moths, or just ordering flies, it's not a lot of work (dubias eat your plant refuse and old fruits, waxworms you just leave in a container of oat bran and honey, and the flies...order pupae and throw them in the container).
 
Joined
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It's been a while since I posted in here...
Parasphendale agrionina female by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
Parasphendale agrionina female by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
Parasphendale agrionina female by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
Hoping these girls breed better than their parents did...I kept all the nymphs from last time
Hierodula membranacea female by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
Hierodula membranacea female by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
PIV (Prey Insect View)
Hierodula membranacea female by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
Hierodula membranacea female by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
And the Florida bark mantids are finally big enough to see without a magnifying glass
Gonatista grisea by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
Gonatista grisea by Hawken Carlton, on Flickr
 

thez_yo

instigator
Joined
Sep 12, 2009
Messages
5,525
Location
Virginia, USA
Man, those are big enough that I wouldn't stick my hands in their cages for fear of losing a finger!!

I recently got one of those cups of mantis from the plant/hardware store a couple weeks back that has ootheca in it. Nothing's hatched (yet? please be fertile...) but I'm hoping my outdoor neps have an infestation of mantids this year :banana2:
 

adnedarn

I'm growing CPs in the Desert of Tucson, Az
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Tucson, Arizona USA
Very cool! Do the Florida bark mantids stay small?
Do they get more used to be handled the more you do or are they always sketchy and jumpy like the ones I pick up in the wild?
[MENTION=7563]thez_yo[/MENTION] Notice even Hawken won't hold the Parasphendale agrionina! :-))
 
Joined
Apr 19, 2012
Messages
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Location
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I've only ever had one mantis actually try and bite me...and it was one of the little Elmantis females (they're the most vicious things I've kept so far). I certainly would hold the Parasphendale, I just don't bother moving them around/off their lids if I don't have to because it's often a headache to get a traveling mantis back in its cage (the female membranacea crawling on me in the above shots is far larger than the budwing, and did not want to go back in her house).
[MENTION=5846]adnedarn[/MENTION]: these are the first Gonatista I've ever had, so I haven't tried handling them really yet (unless they crawl on me, in which case it's just trying to nudge them back in the container before the fruit flies escape). Couldn't say if they calm down with age, but I'd doubt it, though mine are not particularly jumpy. The less you move the less jumpy they'll be though.
[MENTION=7563]thez_yo[/MENTION]: your "cup" probably has a Chinese mantis ooth in it; it's up in the air whether or not it will be fertile, but if it is, after diapause (the winter cold season) it'll usually take 1-2 months before hatching for most species, and the nymphs of that species tend to have a fairly high die-off rate so mist them regularly and don't disturb them if you don't have to. That said though, they're non-native and if they're going outdoors at all probably better if not too many end up making it. Better if a more native species was acquired and raised up (I think Carolina mantids are found in California, if not other related species are and plenty of keepers keep North American species).
 
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