You will receive:
(1) Healthy African Praying Mantis (SPHODROMANTIS LINEOLA) at the L-4 to L-5 growth stage. Can grow up to 3 1/2 inches.
Please be prepared when your mantis arrives with Hydei Fruit Flies. We will send your mantis with a few flies to eat along the way but no doubt, it will be hungry when it arrives.
The African Mantis is a good choice for the beginner, proving one of the easiest to keep in captivity. Not only is it large, but very tame, and will tolerate handling. Diet is no problem, and shedding problems will rarely occur. The African Mantis is more tolerant of changes in humidity and temperature.
Note: The adult mantis photo is for display purposes only.
African Mantis Care
It's best to keep it around 20-26 C (68-78.8 F). Room temperature will work best. Warmer temperature speeds up the metabolism of the mantis and will shorten its life span and in contrast, cooler temperature slows its metabolism and lengthens the life span, but both extremes could kill it. Humidity should be around 60-65%. This could be achieved by spraying or watering the substrate 3 times a week. The main purpose of humidity is to help the mantis molt too much humidity will cripple the mantis during molts, and too little will hinder it from emerging from the old skin. Just make sure it doesn't get too dry or too damp.
This species is quite large. The suggested height is usually 3x the mantis length and 2x for width. They require sticks and leaves for perching and to hang from for molting and catching insects. They are very active and may need some space to roam around or to pursue their prey so adjust caging according to their size.
We have had great success with the Praying Mantis Habitats. There is plenty of room for your mantis to grow and mantis seem to really enjoy the habitat. You can purchase these habitats at our eBay store.
This species eats very well. They are not picky. Crickets and mealworms are the best food for them as they grow past L-9 to L-10 stage, but you can feed them anything else that will fit in its claws. It's recommended that the size of the feeder insect does not exceed 1/3 the mantis length. Even though they are voracious and will attack anything, do not offer them poisonous insects or wasps or bees as these could seriously harm the mantis.
You can either drop the food inside the tank and if the mantis is hungry, it will go after the prey or you can feed them by hand: Use a pair of tweezers to hold the cricket and wave it in front of the mantis. If it's hungry, it will turn its head to stare directly at the insect and will snatch it from the tweezers or you may need to pierce the insect and put it to the mantis mouth and if it likes the taste, it'll grab on to it and begin to feed. Do not overfeed them, overfeeding will shorten their life span also. Feed them as much as it will eat in one day and do not feed it for another 2 days. As for watering, mantids get their water from their prey, but lightly mist the enclosure every couple of days, and occasionally, a mantis will drink off of droplets from a branch or a side of the tank. This also helps keep humidity levels safe.
A mantis will stop eating a day or 2 (sometimes more) prior to its molt. Do not be alarmed if one day your mantis is chowing down on a cricket and the next it refuses its food, it's simply getting ready to shed its skin. Mantids molt every 2-3 weeks as babies and the time in between each molt increases as they get older so their last molt into adulthood can sometimes take as long as 3-4 weeks. It takes about 7 molts for females and about 6 for males. That's why males tend to mature earlier than females and they also die faster. During molts, it is vital that you do not disturb them. The mantis will hang upside down from a branch or the screen lid and will sometimes shake or spasm violently. Then after a while, it worms out of its old skin and will hang out to dry. Once it's dried, it will resume eating and being its normal self after a couple days. To ensure their safety, mist them every day while young nymphs to prevent any blockade during molting.
We ship Fedex 2 day express only. If your daytime temp is over 80 degrees, we will also include an ice pack. If your daytime temp is over 90 degrees, we will contact you regarding picking your order at a local fedex onsite location. Fedex has now contracted with Walgreens and many Safeways for your convenience. We will check it out before shipment to see what would be the best for you. Please contact us if you have any questions. Thank you.