The Beautiful Orchid Mantis: During Mating The Female Turns Cannibalistic, Eating Her Partner
These gorgeous little insects are found in the tropical forests of Southeast Asia. Its four legs and two arms look just like pink orchid petals, that is why they are commonly referred to as Orchid Mantis.
The Hymenopus Coronatus, also known as the Orchid Mantis is an amazing little insect with an impressive disguise. They can be found in the tropical forests of Southeast Asia. These insects have four walking legs and two arms all of which look like pink orchid petals hence how this little insect got its name.
The female Orchid Mantis grows up to 2.5 inches long whereas the male only grows up to 1 inch long. These insects only live around 8 months. During mating, between 13 and 28 percent of the time, the female mantis will turn to cannibalism consuming the male mantis.
These beautiful creatures love to be held, which is why it is not uncommon to see them being kept as pets by insect lovers. However, the Orchid Mantis requires a very specific heat and humidity to thrive. They also live on a high protein diet of live insects, mainly crickets.
The Orchid Mantis uses their two toothed arms when hunting for its prey. Being known for their impressively quick speed once their prey is within reach they do not have long before they are caught. Before they attack they use an aggressive cryptic mimicry to attract their prey and with most of its prey being pollinators it uses its appearance to attract its unsuspecting victims.
Its barbed arms allow the mantis to grab hold of its prey and makes it extremely difficult for the anything to escape its grasp, before being devoured and ripped apart by the tiny teeth of the Orchid Mantis.
The orchid mantis avoids its predators in the same way that it traps its prey, it disguises itself as an orchid flower. Once it is in the shape of the orchid flower it will remain impressively still to ensure it goes undetected by predators until they feel that they are no longer in danger.
If they are detected they will stand up tall on their back legs raising their front legs as wings in an attempt to look as large as possible and scare potential enemies away. The main predators for the orchid mantis are snakes, scorpions, lizards and monkeys.
Now you have read about the Orchid Mantis, make sure you check out our story about the Christmas Tree Worms of Coral Reefs.