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Praying Mantis Facts for Kids

Praying Mantis Facts for Kids

  • Common Name: Praying Mantis
  • Class: Insecta
  • Order: Mantodea
  • Species: ~2,400
  • Diet: Carnivorous
  • Habitat Range: Temperate and Tropical climates
  • First Appeared: ~140 million years ago

15 Praying Mantis Facts For Kids

  1. Praying mantis is the common name for a group of insects in the Mantodea order.
  2. The common name praying mantis was given due to the way their front legs bend together and appear like they are praying.
  3. Praying mantis can be found worldwide in any region that has a temperate or tropical climate.
  4. More than 2,400 species of praying mantises have been discovered and described by scientists.
  5. The earliest fossil discovered of a praying mantis was 140 million years old.
  6. Praying mantis have a triangular-shaped head, power mandibles (jaw), compound eyes, antennae, thorax, front legs, jointed walking legs and an abdomen.
  7. The typical color of a praying mantis is between green and brown, but some species have various, vibrant colors.
  8. The praying mantis is a carnivore and will feed on anything that its large enough to catch and consume.
  9. The praying mantis is an ambush predator, it waits for prey to get close enough before striking it.
  10. A large enough praying mantis can capture small reptiles, amphibians, and very small mammals.
  11. The average lifespan across all praying mantis species is one year.
  12. The average length across all praying mantis species is between two and five inches.
  13. The largest praying mantis species is the Chinese mantis (Tenodera sinensis) with a length of seven inches.
  14. The smallest praying mantis species is the Bolbe pygmaea with a length of only 0.39 inches.
  15. The praying mantis is directly related to cockroaches and termites, they are all in the same superorder (Dictyoptera).

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Praying Mantis Pictures

If a picture is worth a thousand words, then the below images will be helpful for your research on the praying mantis. Below are three various pictures of the praying mantis. These pictures should help you better understand the praying mantis, an elite hunter in the insect world.

Praying Mantis Egg Sack on a Branch

A picture of a praying mantis egg sack on a branch.

Praying Mantis Eating a Grasshopper

A picture of a praying mantis eating a grasshopper.

Close Up of a Praying Mantis Head

A picture of a praying mantis head up close.

Praying Mantis Resources

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