Saturday, March 08, 2014
Praying Mantis Update
Alas, it was not to be. While the crickets were shorter in length than the mantis babies, they were much wider. Most of the little mantids were afraid of the crickets, and the one I did see try to catch one was unable to do so because the cricket was just too wide for it to grab with its little hooks. Back to Petco I went for the fruit flies.
At that point, we had separated as many babies as we could into individual pint and jelly jars, because the population was decreasing steadily as the carnivorous little beasties ate each other. It is quite a trick trying to get fruit flies into small jars. There are always escapees, and there are several out and about in my house now. Unfortunately, even though we'd finally found a good source of food for them, the remaining little mantids kept dying off. At this point, we have one left in a jelly jar, and two left in our butterfly enclosure. The three remaining ones seem to be doing well. We take each one out now and then, and talk to it, and let it climb around on us for some extra exercise. They really are cute.
We still have two more egg cases, so if they hatch, at least we have food ready for them. It's been a good lesson in why God would have so many would hatch at once, because their little lives are so fragile, you need lots of them so that at least a few have a chance to survive until adulthood. We were hoping to raise one for each of us, but now I will be thrilled if even one of them lives to be an adult!
Posted by Beth Hollmann