The Carolina Praying Mantis
    The Carolina mantis (Stagmomantis carolina) is a mantis species native to North Carolina and South Carolina in the United States. Hence the name. But, actually it is a common mantis found in many states wihtin the United States and can also be found in parts of Mexico and South America.

    The male and female Carolina mantis (Stagmomantis carolina) look very different from one another. The adult female has short wings and is big and heavy. The male has long wings and is small, light and active. The male is able to fly and will do so readily, but the female is unable to fly.

    We selected the Carolina Praying Mantis for the simple reason that egg casings were available for purchase.  Typically, female mantis do not lay eggs except during the months of January on into April.  We couldn't wait that long.

This particular species does not grow as large as the Chinese mantis but we felt this particular species would be easy to raise and provide us with several hundred mantids for our study.
The Enclosure
    We purchased a ten gallon glass aquarium which will be used to house the baby mantids immediately upon hatching from the egg casings.  We added some branches for climbing and a natural sponge for water.  It may take weeks before our mantids emerge but we are ready.
This page was last updated: December 8, 2017
The Grow out Period
    Upon hatching, our baby mantids will be no larger than your little finger nail.  However, they are born predators and will begin looking for food and moisture almost immediately.  Praying mantis are usually cannabilistic not only during the mating season but throughout their lifespan.  We are anticipating that our mantids will begin feeding on each other despite our attempts to introduce an alternative food source.

    Praying mantids are opportunistic feeders and will prey on just about anything that they can catch and consume.  We are going to use fruit flies (dropsifilia) as an initial food source since fruit fly cultures are generally easy to purchase and reproduce quite readily.  However, just about any insect will suffice including ants, spiders, flies, beetles, small children etc.