Can just-hatched mantids eat a full dead roach or are fruit flies needed?


Jun 4, 2010
Hello I have a chinese mantis ooth. this is my first time with any typ of mantis and was hoping for some help. i know how to hatch the ooth and i know that there will be ALOT of little guys but I was wondering if (like slings) you could just prekill large roaches and have miltiple mantids eat it? or do I NEED to get them the fruit flies? if i need to get the fruit flies were do i get them?


Dec 18, 2010
I get the impression, baby mantises don't scavenge dead prey like slings. If you're in a hurry, you might find fruit flies at a local Petsmart. I saw them there the other day. I'm not sure you'd want to feed any off until you've got a culture established however. Another alternative would be an online source.

Bugs In Cyberspace

Old Timer
Dec 10, 2006
The only reasonable food option for 200 baby mantises is a fruit fly culture or two. They will not scavenge dead anything. These are easily found for sale online or best by calling around to local pet stores of the national chain variety, as mentioned.


Oct 30, 2010
I woke up this morning and found that one of my Chinese Mantis ooths has hatched out somewhere between 200-300 baby Mantis.

I thought I'd throw in my two cents worth since I'm now realizing what I did wrong and maybe you can learn.

First off, I was figuring it might be another week or two before they hatched, but it took exactly 18 days from the day I got them and stuck them in their container. I know someone down the street who has an orchid greenhouse and I'll see if she wants any. I'm prepared as far as containers go but not food. I was planning this morning to order pinheads and melanogaster and have them ready but the hatch beat me. Now I've got to scramble and find suitable food because cannibalism is going to be starting sometime soon.

My intention was really to keep one dozen from each ooth and raise them up and see if I could breed them.

All I can say is be prepared because you do not know what day they will hatch. The amount of babies crawling around the container is really intimating.:eek:

And BTW...I suspended mine from a wood dowl by way of thread and when I would just sit there looking at the ooths yesterday and the day before I could swear I saw one of them slightly moving.