Fact Tuesday: Praying Mantis

This is the first regular feature of this blog: Fact Tuesday! Each Tuesday I will post a quick little science fact.

It’s Fact Tuesday! I’ve started asking fellow employees of the Saskatchewan Science Centre to tell me their favourite science fact. Here is one from Clinton, our GO! science Outreach Coordinator:

I was recently surprised to learn that the female praying mantis doesn’t always kill her mate after mating.

I did a little bit of research on this, and it seems that they tend to kill their mate more often in captivity than in the wild. I thought that was pretty interesting too!

Clinton’s fact today also reminded me of a photo that I saw recently of a praying mantis catching a hummingbird! Here it is:

Photo by Sharon Fullingim, published on National Geographic Your Shot

Photo by Sharon Fullingim, published on National Geographic Your Shot

Stay curious,
Collette

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4 Responses to “Fact Tuesday: Praying Mantis”

  1. Krystal Says:

    Hey Collette!!

    Great blog 🙂 I wonder how it managed to catch that hummingbird though.. thats pretty sweet!!

    Krystal

  2. Saskatchewan Science Centre Says:

    Thanks Krystal! I know, it seems pretty crazy! When I was reading about them to make sure the facts of this post are correct, I learned that the praying mantis is a carnivore, and that it’s not uncommon for it to eat things like this. They are super fast! They whip out their arms, which are covered in spikes, and grab things. And hummingbirds are pretty light, even for a bird. It’s still pretty incredible though. I’d love to see a praying mantis in real life.

    Collette

  3. Carmody Wilson Says:

    Do we have praying mantis in Saskatchewan?

  4. Saskatchewan Science Centre Says:

    Hi Carmody, I asked Sheila your question, she’s our Environmental Programs Coordinator, and her reply was this:

    As far as I’ve been able to find, we do not. They were introduced in BC and some of the US states to control grasshoppers and have now been found to be expanding their “range” as an introduced species, however I can’t find any mention of them in Saskatchewan. If they are found here, they aren’t native. If you are interested in some of the amazing range of native insects we do have in Saskatchewan you can check out:

    http://hww.ca/hww.asp?id=11&pid=1
    http://esask.uregina.ca/entry/bugs_hemiptera.html

    Collette

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