Here’s a type of praying mantis few people ever see since it’s tiny and well camouflaged. Kierán spotted it Sunday on Mt. Diablo. It’s Litaneutria minor, a ground dwelling desert mantid. This one is just over one centimeter long, maybe 12 mm., which would make it a fifth instar according to Raiford Roberts’ 1932-1934 study in the area around Uvalde, Texas. Note the protective coloration and pointed eyes. This species doesn’t wait on flowers or leaves to ambush prey; it pursues it across the ground. But not much is known about L. minor.

Update: Enjoying a fly for lunch!

One Comment on “Minor Ground Mantid

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