Chinese Praying Mantis (Tenodera sinensis) Hangs all day

Roy1982

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So yeah, I have a 30 x 20 x 20 tank, and I love it, and I'm not changing it.

It's filled with branches and leaves, and the substrate it coming today, and the 1/2 - 3/4" Dubia roaches are coming Thursday from Josh's Frogs.

It's been almost 2 days now since I've had her. She's an adult female. Why does she walk around on the lid for almost two days now? She has eaten a fly and two small months so far, to get her by until thursday. She gobbled them up very quickly.



Direct Image : http://i.imgur.com/ou7fT8d.jpg


Direct Image : http://i.imgur.com/fEuOPKX.jpg

According to what some people said, she's in the final instar. She's fully grown.

Ok, so why is she doing that, why does she hang ou on the bottom of the lid all the time?

01. Because she's going to have babies. (lay an Ooth).
02. Because she's going to molt. (She's in her final instar.. or is she, and they he was wrong on Facebook).

So why..? Doesn't the blood rush to her head when she's like that?

For crists sake, when I found her, she was climbing up the corner of the side door for the backyard garage, in the middle of the night.. Maybe she's crazy..?

She caught the moth and fly because the sticks and stuff are setup in a way that the fly and moth climed the stick and met her at the bottom of the lid. But I'm really worried, because I'm getting Dubia's thursday, and I don't think they'll climp the limbs like the fly and moth did. Yeah, I said moth. The first one she ate, I had her on my hand and she ate the first one off the back screen door. I showed it to her, and she's like YUM. Snatched it right off the screen door, and gone in less than 6 seconds. It was a small moth.

Here's a little video I did..

Yeah.. It's sand. The eco earth is coming today. Early delivery from Amazon Prime (YEAY !!!)

Anyways, sorry about the noise in the bg. It's my Ac. Yes, mantis ideal temp is 72 - 82F.

I did read a little, and my first mantis was fried as a baby in the sun. That's not going to happen again. She's in a 30 x 20 x 20 tank now, and that's all I had, because it was going to used for a Giant Desert Hairy (Hadrurus arizonensis).

I don't like small containers anyways.. So.. That's just me. etc. etc.
 

Andrea82

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As far as I can tell, there is nothing wrong with her. She has simply decided she likes the screen lid best for hanging ;)
My H.membranacea ( also mature female, and of a large species) also prefers to hang upside down from either screen or a branch. My P.paradoxa are also upside down most of the time.
Just mist the enclosure now and then for droplets to drink, feed her like you are planning to do, and she will be fine :)
Edit:
It's only good that you don't like small enclosures. Mantids like their space :D
 

Roy1982

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As far as I can tell, there is nothing wrong with her. She has simply decided she likes the screen lid best for hanging ;)
My H.membranacea ( also mature female, and of a large species) also prefers to hang upside down from either screen or a branch. My P.paradoxa are also upside down most of the time.
Just mist the enclosure now and then for droplets to drink, feed her like you are planning to do, and she will be fine :)
Edit:
It's only good that you don't like small enclosures. Mantids like their space :D
I'll just grow up, and stop worrying like a worried mom. I'm just excited & nervous is all.

Thanks for the words of wisdom, and thanks so much for letting me know you have the same problem, made up or not. It makes me feel better knowing it's normal. I just don't like the fact that she chooses to hang on the bottom of the top metal mesh lid, and not the sticks and crap I put in there. Maybe I'll reorganize it a little. idk.

That's really cool that you have some mantids as well. Those being a Giant Asian mantis (Hierodula membranacea), and a Ghost Mantis (Phyllocrania paradoxa).

As for the enclosure.. Yeah, thanks. I just get a gut feeling in me that says, hey !! They are animals, they don't like to be in tiny little enclosures, they like space.. So I just go with it. The desert hairy was going to put in this tank too, still might, but another one. :) Idk.. I like exotic stuff. It's different, and makes my world a little more interesting, and get's me involved in the world I live in I guess.

Idk, I like Mantids, regardless if I'm a dude. I think they're interesting & cool. :D

I also like the responsibility for learning & caring for them. It's a hobby yeah.. But I like doing stuff like this, because idk, it's fun, interesting, and cool I guess.
 

Andrea82

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I'm used to using scientific names, common names can vary between continents, hence why I say H.membranacea and P.paradoxa :)
Glad I could help out!
I know lots of guys keeping mantids, so it is not gender preference to keep them, lol.
Some animals like small spaces, like tarantula, but with mantids it is wise to give them some space for molting and freedom of movement. For some species it can be hard to catch their food when being in a large enclosure (P.paradoxa) but with T.sinensis being an active hunter with a big appetite, that won't be a problem. My male T.sinensis is a garbage truck slash dive bomber. Eats everything, and literally drops himself on the prey. Very entertaining to watch. :)
 

chanda

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Hanging upside down is nothing to worry about. Most of my mantises (regardless of species) seem to prefer that position, either hanging from the screen or hanging underneath one of their branches. If I had to guess, I'd say they perceive that as a good vantage point for ambushing potential prey. They may also identify the screen as providing some sort of cover or camouflage.
 

chanda

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She caught the moth and fly because the sticks and stuff are setup in a way that the fly and moth climed the stick and met her at the bottom of the lid. But I'm really worried, because I'm getting Dubia's thursday, and I don't think they'll climp the limbs like the fly and moth did. Yeah, I said moth. The first one she ate, I had her on my hand and she ate the first one off the back screen door. I showed it to her, and she's like YUM. Snatched it right off the screen door, and gone in less than 6 seconds. It was a small moth.

Yeah.. It's sand. The eco earth is coming today. Early delivery from Amazon Prime (YEAY !!!)

I don't like small containers anyways.. So.. That's just me. etc. etc.
Substrate doesn't really matter too much with mantises because they rarely touch it. Eco earth is probably better than sand - but just because it will help hold in moisture and keep her humidity up. If you keep her in the glass tank, though, humidity isn't likely to be too much of an issue. Personally, I keep my mantises in 32oz deli cups when they're small, then move them to pop-up mesh butterfly enclosures when they get big. I don't even bother with substrate for them - just a few paper towels (to facilitate cleanup and retain moisture) and I mist them every couple of days. (We do have a dedicated bug/spider/reptile room with a small humidifier running 24/7 so humidity is rarely an issue.)

The one issue you may encounter - given her preference for hanging from the screen - is that you need to always be aware of where she is before opening the lid because you wouldn't want her to be injured in the sliding top. If she is in the wrong spot, you may not be able to open the lid at all until she moves. (That's why I like the butterfly pop-ups. It's much easier to open those safely, regardless of where the mantis may be at any given moment. Also, with the mesh sides, they can climb up and down those as well.)

Feeding her dubias will present its own set of challenges. Moths, crickets, and flies are easy feeders because they'll be out prowling/flying around where the mantis can easily see and catch them - usually without a great deal of effort on her part. They will often walk right up to her. Roaches, on the other hand, are going to want to bury themselves in your substrate - and are unlikely to come out again. The mantis will not dig for them so she may end up going hungry and "adopting" a few new roommates. If you are going to feed her roaches, I'd recommend using feeding tongs to make sure she grabs the roach and it doesn't slip away and hide. (During cage cleanouts, I've found live roaches hidden in substrate in various invert cages months after they were allegedly eaten.)
 

Roy1982

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Substrate doesn't really matter too much with mantises because they rarely touch it. Eco earth is probably better than sand - but just because it will help hold in moisture and keep her humidity up. If you keep her in the glass tank, though, humidity isn't likely to be too much of an issue. Personally, I keep my mantises in 32oz deli cups when they're small, then move them to pop-up mesh butterfly enclosures when they get big. I don't even bother with substrate for them - just a few paper towels (to facilitate cleanup and retain moisture) and I mist them every couple of days. (We do have a dedicated bug/spider/reptile room with a small humidifier running 24/7 so humidity is rarely an issue.)

The one issue you may encounter - given her preference for hanging from the screen - is that you need to always be aware of where she is before opening the lid because you wouldn't want her to be injured in the sliding top. If she is in the wrong spot, you may not be able to open the lid at all until she moves. (That's why I like the butterfly pop-ups. It's much easier to open those safely, regardless of where the mantis may be at any given moment. Also, with the mesh sides, they can climb up and down those as well.)

Feeding her dubias will present its own set of challenges. Moths, crickets, and flies are easy feeders because they'll be out prowling/flying around where the mantis can easily see and catch them - usually without a great deal of effort on her part. They will often walk right up to her. Roaches, on the other hand, are going to want to bury themselves in your substrate - and are unlikely to come out again. The mantis will not dig for them so she may end up going hungry and "adopting" a few new roommates. If you are going to feed her roaches, I'd recommend using feeding tongs to make sure she grabs the roach and it doesn't slip away and hide. (During cage cleanouts, I've found live roaches hidden in substrate in various invert cages months after they were allegedly eaten.)

Yeah, she can eat flying a stuff really easily. So far, in the last two days, she's has a small moth, fly, moth, and now today, a stink bug. So Flying insects is super easy. I simply let them go in the tank, and in time, just like you said, they come to her at the top.

I got dubia's because they are good eating. They are much better and hearty than crickets, flies, moths, and stink bugs. So that's why I ordered them.

I had the choice of getting her ANYTHING (Mealworms, waxworms, superworms, hornworms, crickets, etc. etc.)

If I could give her flies, I would have. But I honestly don't know how long flies would live in a container, or separate enclosure.

So what do people "including yourself" feed your mantids?

I guess I could purchase some other insects, but I'd like some ideas, or recommendations, regardless of what I've said previously.
 

chanda

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Yeah, she can eat flying a stuff really easily. So far, in the last two days, she's has a small moth, fly, moth, and now today, a stink bug. So Flying insects is super easy. I simply let them go in the tank, and in time, just like you said, they come to her at the top.

I got dubia's because they are good eating. They are much better and hearty than crickets, flies, moths, and stink bugs. So that's why I ordered them.

I had the choice of getting her ANYTHING (Mealworms, waxworms, superworms, hornworms, crickets, etc. etc.)

If I could give her flies, I would have. But I honestly don't know how long flies would live in a container, or separate enclosure.

So what do people "including yourself" feed your mantids?

I guess I could purchase some other insects, but I'd like some ideas, or recommendations, regardless of what I've said previously.
I usually feed mine crickets, just because I have so many different inverts and they're a good all-purpose feeder that is readily available and inexpensive. I do have a budding Dubia colony that I'm raising as feeders for some of my tarantulas, but the burrowing habits of roaches make them a little inconvenient as feeders for anything that isn't going to grab it and eat right away. (I generally only feed them to the Ts that are aggressive feeders.) I have fed Dubia nymphs to my adult mantises before - but only with feeding tongs or in a cage with no substrate for the dang things to burrow into.

Now, if you want a really picky eater, you should try orb weaver spiders! First, you have to find a species that creates a small enough web to keep in captivity (some Argiope species qualify) - and then they really have a strong preference for flying prey like moths and flies. Crickets and roaches do not tend to get themselves into the web to begin with, and when they do, they can usually manage to get themselves back out again. (Probably because - in captivity - the spiders do not make webs as large or strong as those that they create in the wild.) I pretty much have to catch flies and moths to feed them!
 

Roy1982

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I usually feed mine crickets, just because I have so many different inverts and they're a good all-purpose feeder that is readily available and inexpensive. I do have a budding Dubia colony that I'm raising as feeders for some of my tarantulas, but the burrowing habits of roaches make them a little inconvenient as feeders for anything that isn't going to grab it and eat right away. (I generally only feed them to the Ts that are aggressive feeders.) I have fed Dubia nymphs to my adult mantises before - but only with feeding tongs or in a cage with no substrate for the dang things to burrow into.

Now, if you want a really picky eater, you should try orb weaver spiders! First, you have to find a species that creates a small enough web to keep in captivity (some Argiope species qualify) - and then they really have a strong preference for flying prey like moths and flies. Crickets and roaches do not tend to get themselves into the web to begin with, and when they do, they can usually manage to get themselves back out again. (Probably because - in captivity - the spiders do not make webs as large or strong as those that they create in the wild.) I pretty much have to catch flies and moths to feed them!
I was taught that crickets are not so good as a food source.
From this video here on YouTube

Take your directly to where he talks about what I've said.

I'm not as smart as anyone on here, I'm far from it. But when I hear good info, I might be gullible, but I believe and and have faith in people.

I really would like to give her some crickets, I really would, but between his video, and Moonlight mantids video(s), talks about dubia roaches.

Which he starts to talk about here



I haven't experienced feeding her roaches yet. Periode. My intuition tells me your absolutely correct, that it will be very difficult to feed her roaches. But, I'm gonna try to do it outside of the cage, or feed her with the forceps, tweezers, tongs, etc.

So I'll find out as soon as tomorrow when they get here.

http://i.imgur.com/o39R1UT.jpg


I was lucky the first couple days.. But I can't get her flies and stuff during the winter. If she dies before that, which I'm thinking she might, because she's in her final instar, I'll have experience under my belt for what is good and what isn't. It's pretty obvious that flies, moths, and stink bugs are a breeze to catch. But not during the winter season. So, this was my absolute first time buying bugs to feed a mantid.

As far as Tarantulas & scorpions goes. I haven't purchased, let alone caught one yet. So I'd like to buy one, and take care of it, and have it as a hobbyist pet.

It's kind of a new thing for me, but I'm really smart, and the stuff online, especially the help I get from here is excellent. If I can't figure stuff out for myself with YouTube or Google, then I know there's a ton of people such as yourselves to help me. Because like I said, I'm not an expert, I'm new to this whole thing.

My first Mantis was fried alive in the sun, in a plastic opaque mixing bowl.. Ya know, the ones with the blue lids..? The thick ones..

Yeah, tipped it upside down, and cut the bottom, and made that the top. etc. etc.

Anyways, I went outside with it, not knowing that mantids were friendly, I kept him/her in it, ran back upstairs, and when I came back it was DEAD.

I felt so bad.. I took it outside to fid it some food, like ants and stuff. Not knowing that ants are acidic or whatever.. Anyways..
 

Hisserdude

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the burrowing habits of roaches make them a little inconvenient as feeders for anything that isn't going to grab it and eat right away.
Correction, the burrowing habits of burrowing roaches makes them inconvenient to feed to non burrowing predators. :p

There are plenty of non-burrowing roaches that could make good feeders, Shelfordella lateralis, (Blatta lateralis to some), is a good example, and would probably be great for mantids. They are more "cricket like", in the way that they don't burrow and instead wander around attractively for your carnivorous inverts, (though they will try to hide under any objects in the cage, though the same goes for crickets). They don't get as large as Blaptica, and therefore can be an impractical feeder for larger Ts, but I imagine they'd work great for most mantid's. :)
 

chanda

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Correction, the burrowing habits of burrowing roaches makes them inconvenient to feed to non burrowing predators. :p

There are plenty of non-burrowing roaches that could make good feeders, Shelfordella lateralis, (Blatta lateralis to some), is a good example, and would probably be great for mantids. They are more "cricket like", in the way that they don't burrow and instead wander around attractively for your carnivorous inverts, (though they will try to hide under any objects in the cage, though the same goes for crickets). They don't get as large as Blaptica, and therefore can be an impractical feeder for larger Ts, but I imagine they'd work great for most mantid's. :)
Good to know! The only roaches I keep are Dubias and Madagascar hissing cockroaches, both of which will burrow when used as feeders and not eaten right away.
 

Hisserdude

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Good to know! The only roaches I keep are Dubias and Madagascar hissing cockroaches, both of which will burrow when used as feeders and not eaten right away.
Yeah, both of those can burrow a bit when put in a cage with substrate, though the hissers have a very limited burrowing ability compared to the dubia. The Shelfordella can not burrow at all though, and would make much better feeder IMO.
 

Roy1982

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Yeah, both of those can burrow a bit when put in a cage with substrate, though the hissers have a very limited burrowing ability compared to the dubia. The Shelfordella can not burrow at all though, and would make much better feeder IMO.
Big whoop. I'll just hand feed her, no biggie. Thanks for all the educated and experienced replies to this thread, helps me a ton. I'll be sure to observe there behaviour and stuff when I get them.. I used to kill these sob's now I'm buying them and feeding them to an adult female chinese mantis. lol. I guess I'll have to buy some 12" tongs or forceps or something on Amazon, thanks so much.

I also read a post about a guy that bought like 1000 of them, lol, then he found out that his T couldn't get them before they burrowed into the substrate.. I only ordered 25, so.. lol.
 

billrogers

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Big whoop. I'll just hand feed her, no biggie. Thanks for all the educated and experienced replies to this thread, helps me a ton. I'll be sure to observe there behaviour and stuff when I get them.. I used to kill these sob's now I'm buying them and feeding them to an adult female chinese mantis. lol. I guess I'll have to buy some 12" tongs or forceps or something on Amazon, thanks so much.

I also read a post about a guy that bought like 1000 of them, lol, then he found out that his T couldn't get them before they burrowed into the substrate.. I only ordered 25, so.. lol.
By the way, when I have kept this species of mantis before they usually have lived to around Christmas.
 

JumpingSpiderLady

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Mine ignores dubia. It's like she can't even see them. She likes crickets though, so crickets she gets! The way I figure it, she is no longer growing. Maybe they are not the best food, but she doesn't need to form a new exo or anything. Perhaps I'm wrong, but I'd rather she have junk food she will eat than heathy food she won't.
Mine is also always on the lid. It's natural for them to hang like that and wait for prey.
 

Andrea82

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You can also feed mealworms or morioworms, i believe the english term is superworm?
Crickets can cause obstipation, and they can die from that. Nothing wrong with a little cricket now and then, but I wouldn't use it as main feeders.
 

JumpingSpiderLady

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You can also feed mealworms or morioworms, i believe the english term is superworm?
Crickets can cause obstipation, and they can die from that. Nothing wrong with a little cricket now and then, but I wouldn't use it as main feeders.
Thanks for that. Gave her a superworm today. I just put in in a shallow, open Tupperware so it couldn't burrow. She seemed to enjoy it.
 

Roy1982

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Yeah, both of those can burrow a bit when put in a cage with substrate, though the hissers have a very limited burrowing ability compared to the dubia. The Shelfordella can not burrow at all though, and would make much better feeder IMO.
I've had a chance today to deal with dubia roaches. They are kinda quiet, almost didn't want to feed them to her, but she had three today. They are 1/2 - 3/4" Dubia roaches I ordered from Josh's Frogs.. Nymphs I believe..?

They seem to want to run and hide, or when they get tipped over, they like to play dead. I had a little trouble at first handling them, and feeding her them, but in the end, she ate three, not all in one sitting of course. I think, correct me if I'm wrong, she should be good for two to three days.

By the way, when I have kept this species of mantis before they usually have lived to around Christmas.
That sux, but kinda alright. If I want to have another mantis, I'll probably have to purchase one before winter, and buy another enclosure ("tank"). Maybe one not so large like the 30 x 20 x 20 I have right now. Thanks so much for answering my question, now at least I have a hint as to when she might die.

Mine ignores dubia. It's like she can't even see them. She likes crickets though, so crickets she gets! The way I figure it, she is no longer growing. Maybe they are not the best food, but she doesn't need to form a new exo or anything. Perhaps I'm wrong, but I'd rather she have junk food she will eat than healthy food she won't.
Mine is also always on the lid. It's natural for them to hang like that and wait for prey.
lol, Mine did too the same thing today. She ingnored it like it wasn't even there. She had three, and I had to, if you watch my video I'll post at the end, you'll clearly see me putting it in her face. She LOVES them, which I'd expect, seeing how they're full of protein, and moisture, etc. If you scroll down, you'll see the chart on that page, I'll also post the chart below. I'm not saying what to do, nore do I have the right, just spreading the news that's what a lot of people feed T's, Reps, and Mantids these days. That's what I gathered. I also heard today from Josh's Frogs that the better Crickets are Banded Crickets. Supposedly they're better for your exotic pets. The hyperlink takes you to his video, where he talks about them. I'm sure there's more info on the banded crickets. :smug: Just trying to contribute here, is all, I don't mean anyone any offense. Do what you like, it's totally your choice. :)


http://i.imgur.com/wWs6QWk.jpg

I didn't add banded crickets to the list.. Sorry. WOW !!! I just stumbled on this by mistake.. They got some really nice charts @ dubiaroachdepot.
That's nuts !!! How the heck do they get all that info from bugs and stuff... that's crazy !! Makes my chart look simple.

Josh's frog's says : Protein 17%, Fat 8%, Fiber 2%, Water 71%

You can also feed mealworms or morioworms, i believe the english term is superworm?
Crickets can cause obstipation, and they can die from that. Nothing wrong with a little cricket now and then, but I wouldn't use it as main feeders.
Yeah, I've been looking at them for the past couple days. I hear they're good, and so are the silkworms, but I don't see anything on YouTube with people feeding them to they're mantid, T, or even Scorpions, etc. So.. But the numbers look good. :happy:


So here's my video guys, I got the 25ct. 1/2 - 3/4" Dubia's today from Josh's Frogs. Hope you like it.. or them rather. Seeing I did two of them, the first one isn't as good as the first, but it shows the an unboxing in the beginning, and then a feeding. The 2nd one is her third, and last one I fed her today. Like I said in the other reply, I did have a little difficult time feeding them to her, but she gobbled them right up. :cool:

#1. Josh's Frogs UnBoxing & Adult Female Chinese Mantis Eating Dubia Roaches
#2. Chinese Mantis Vs Dubia Roach 1080p, 20Mbps

Hope you like the videos, just be honest and let me know if I could improve the video(s), either in the comments or on this thread.
 
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