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Praying Mantiss

.. tilization. As the eggs pass through her reproductive system, they are fertilized by the stored sperm. After finding a raised location, like a branch or stem, special appendages at the base of the abdomen (ventral valve maybe) create a gelatinous egg material into the shape characteristic of the particular species as it exits her ovipositor. The egg laying process takes 3 to 5 hours long.

By instinct the female twists her abdomen in a spiral motion to create chambers within the ootheca. The egg case then hardens Peters 6 into a paper mache like substance that is resistant to pests who would try and eat it. There are small air pockets between each cell of the ootheca which aids in insulation against cold winters. There can be anywhere from 30 to 300 eggs laid in a sitting. Often times the female dies after her final birthing.

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The life-cycle of the North American mantid species runs from spring to fall. When spring time temperatures become favorable the mantid nymphs emerge from the ootheca. They drop towards the ground on a thin strand of stringy material produced by a special gland in their body. Mantid nymphs are hemimetabolous. Mantid nymphs appear like small adults, but without fully-formed wings.

Nymphs go through 6 to 7 molts before they reach adulthood. Emerging nymphs feed on whatever small insects they can get their claws on, including their brothers and sisters. The primary enemies to mantids are spiders, birds, snakes, mammals(especially bats), and man. The mantis has four primary methods for defense. The mantids green and brown exo-skeleton color help aid in camouflage. The mantids ability to stand perfectly still for extremely long periods of time cause it to be over looked by predators.

When confronted by an enemy the mantis asumes the startle display, rearing its fore legs up and spread apart, and rattling its wings. The ultrasonic ear is also a form of defense for the mantis. Insect Pest Management or IPM is a subject of research Peters 7 that is really starting to take notice throughout the world. Its becoming apparent that the over use of chemical pesticides is ruining our Earths ecology. Finding alternative methods of pest control besides the use of pesticides is imperative if we expect to keep this planet in good condition.

Numerous cases of IPM have been initiated and have proved to work. The praying mantis plays an important role in natures insect pest control plan. The praying mantis is one of the few predators with that are fast enough to catch mosquitos and flies while their in flight. Moth populations are also controlled by mantids. There are three common species of mantids found in North America. The European mantis (Mantis religiosa), the Chinese mantis (Tenodera aridifolia sinesis), and the Carolina mantis (Stagmomantis carolina). The European mantis is usually 2-3 inches in length, and has a consistently bright green color.

These are distinguished as the only of the three species that bear a black-ringed spot beneath the fore coxae. The European mantids are most often found east of The Mississippi River. It is said that the European mantids were first introduced into North America in Rochester New York in 1899 on a shipment of nursery plants. The Chinese mantis is the largest of the three native to North America reaching lengths up to five inches. This species is mostly light brown with a dull green trim around its wings.

The Chinese mantis can be found throughout the United States. Peters 8 The Chinese mantis arrived in 1895 on nursery stock sent to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Carolina mantis is the smallest of the three never reaching a length greater than 2 inches. This mantis has a dusky brown or gray color to blend in with the pine forests and and sandhills of Southeastern part of the U.S. An interesting feature of the Carolina mantis is that the wings which only extend 3/4 of the way down the abdomen.

There are many myths and legneds asscociated with mantids. For thousands of years they have captured our imagination, and curiosity. The word mantis comes from ancient greece and means diviner or prohpet. Many cultures have credited the mantid with a variety of magical qualities. In the southern portion of the U.S.

it is believed that if the brown saliva of a mantis ever comes in contact with you, youll go blind. This mystical saliva also has the potential to kill a horse. In France it is believed that if a lost child is ever in the woods and cant find his way home the praying stance of the mantid will direct them toward safety. The Turks and Arabs believe the mantid always prays toward Mecca. During the European Middle-ages it was thought that the mantis was a great worshiper of god due to the great amounts of time spent in prayer. In China it is believed that the roasted egg cases of mantids will cure bed wetting in people. In Africa, if a mantid Peters 9 ever lands on someone it will bring that person good luck.

It is also believed that the mantis possess the power to bring the dead back to life. Type in praying mantis on most any search engines and youll be able to find numerous amounts of info. But 80% of most of these praying mantis sites are all related to the praying mantis style of kung-fu. To find any decsent info on the praying mantis, you must type in the latin name. Many legends are told about the origins of praying mantis kung-fu.

There is no disputing the fact that Wang Lang invented Plum Blossom Praying Mantis Boxing. The one legend that seems to be found at most web-sites describing the history of Praying Mantis Kungfu is the one about Wang Langs hiking trip through the Lao Shan mountains of China. After a recent devasting loss in a kungfu fight Wang needed some time to himself. While resting on a log he noticed two mantids fighting. Their quickness, patience, and flexibility intrigued Wang.

Using those same ideas, and techniques used by the mantids he developed praying mantis kungfu. Peters 10 WORKS CITED 1). Profotilov, Hya. History of Praying Mantis Kungfu, http://php.indiana.edu/~iprofati/history.html. 2). Watkins, Gary.

Praying Mantids, www.uky.edu/Agriculture/Entomology/entfacts/trees/ ef418.htm 3). The Care of Mantids, www.insect-world.com/main/mantids.html 4). Bragg, Phil. Praying mantis Care Notes, www.ex.ac.uk/bugclub/caresheet/mantids.html 5). Johnson, Sylvia. Mantises, Minneapolis: Lerner Publications Company, 1984.

6). Hess, Lilo. The praying Mantis: Insect Cannibal, New York: Charles Scribner and Sons, 1971. Animal Science.

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