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Male and female praying mantises

By Gary Bogue
Thursday, October 13th, 2011 at 6:32 am in Preying mantis.

Female (large) and male (small) praying mantises breeding. Photo by Travis McATee, Concord, CA
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I watch for and photograph Praying Mantis specimens each year.  I hope you can use this one.  They have been attached (breeding) for over 24 hours.  I was reminded of the Viagra commercial which warns of the “four hour ” happenstance so, naturally, I thought to check with you to see if I should intervene out of concern for the poor fellow.  These two prevailed through the rain on Thursday, so cold water does no good. I will give you the final tally.  I assume the male is toast following culmination. Best Regards from a daily reader.
Travis McATee, Concord, California

I read one report that male praying mantises had been observed copulating with females for as long as 24 hours. Let me know if these two characters in the above photo set a new world record. Maybe he’s just scared to get off, for obvious reasons (females supposedly kill and eat the males after breeding). Maybe he’ll be lucky. From what I’ve read, the males don’t always get eaten. /Gary

** EPILOGUE: Travis contacted me later to report:
“After 24 hours he was gone. She stayed. I couldn’t find any remains of a crime scene.” /Travis

Praying mantis on a leaf. Photo by Travis McATee, Concord, CA
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2 Responses to “Male and female praying mantises”

  1. Barbara Says:

    Thanks for the laugh, Travis! I rarely see praying mantises out here. They were all over the place back East — and I do enjoy them. (I would have taken the same adieu approach with my Ex, but I’m about 90% vegan. Then, too, with my luck he would have been on the FDA recall list …)

  2. Ellen Says:

    I couldn’t stand it!!! Several years ago I rescued a male who’s leg had just been gobbled. For years after my kids teased me about “Mom’s Tiny Tim” 😉

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