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Photo#4570
Grass-like Mantis - Thesprotia graminis - male

Grass-like Mantis - Thesprotia graminis - Male
Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, USA
June 30, 2004
This photo was taken at the Frenchman's Forest Natural Area. These mantids can be common down in South Florida, and are often mistaken for walking sticks. They have a habit of walking with the forelegs extended in front of them in a walking stick manner. I love how this one is perfectly parallel with the twig it's hanging from.

I used the "Florida Preying Mantids" pdf file (1) for identification.

Grass-like mantis, Thesprotia graminis sitings
Yes WOW! I have my answer after more than 3 years! I reside in a fairly central area of San Diego, CA
2-3 yrs ago I see this delicate thing flying across the yard. It was definitely bigger than the Crane flies here but a lot more skinny and it seemed so fragile that I found it hard to believe it could fly! When it landed there was no doubt in my mind that it was a praying mantis. I reached out to touch it and it disappeared elsewhere in the garden. It wasn't until a year later, about 1 1/2 years ago, that I saw another one flying. This time I carefully cupped it into my hand and moved it to a plant carefully placing it. It seemed rather secure...so I raced into the house to get my camera. By the time I was back it was nowhere to be found! I looked every where for something twiggy looking as I thought it was just faking me out. Boy was I upset! I should have brought it to a more secure location! I am glad you got it Tony! There is a more "normal" body type mantid that I have seen here yearly since 1987. It is small. I will try to id it now that I have access to this site.

Definately A Mantid
I have found these mantids in my backyard in Zachary, Louisiana, and they are definately not waterscorpions (Ranatra spp) and are perfectly easy to hold.

Male
Female is wingless, male winged, according to Helfer (1), so I believe this is a male.

Wow!
I have *never* ever seen one of these before. I live in Northwestern Ontario, north west of the 'wolf's eye' of the Great Lake Superior. We do not have praying mantis here at all, though I am familiar with them from a childhood spent in Southwestern Ontario.

Yet, coming out of the lake, yesterday, I spied one of these grass-like mantids on the dock edge. Wishing I had a camera, I gazed and oggled so much, memorizing it, that I scared it off so it flew...into the lake. I scooped it out with a branch and deposited it safely back on the dock.

I could not fathom what it could be, looked like a walking stick, had wings, had two incredibly slender praying mantis arms coming out of the top of its head...

But wait, this one in the photo seems to have normal antennae coming out of its head...? The one I saw definitely had its praying arms emerging from the top of its head. Am I on the wrong track with its identification?

Fabulous site!

 
Hmmmm...
I don't think this species makes it as far north as you are...I wonder if it was a Water Scorpion of the Rantra sp? It sure sounds like it...(if so, be careful handling it, they can bite!)

 
After perusing the other photos...
Ah! Mine had the blue stripe like the “Grass-like Mantid on Yellow Pitcher Plant - Thesprotia graminis” photo, but with the arms (seeming?) to come out of the top of the head just like Photo#7613 of the Grass-like mantid.

 
Ah!
You are sooo right Tony! That's exactly it.

 
WOW!
That is one of the most coolest looking praying mantis I've laid my eyes on so far this year! Great shot. And about the Water Scorpions.....you don't want to go picking those up just like Tony said. Better to look at them instead. Again this a cool mantis! Hope I see one if I ever go to Florida.

P.S I love the camouflage on this one!

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