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Posts Tagged: praying mantis

Find the Praying Mantids in the Milkweed

Early morning silhouette: Find the two praying mantids. There's a female and a male clinging to the milkweed. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

It's 6 a.m. Do you know where your praying mantids are? Well, yes. Two of them. Just before dawn broke, we walked around our pollinator (and prey) garden and spotted a pencil-thin male mantis, Stagmomantis limbata,  silhouetted on the...

Posted on Tuesday, October 3, 2017 at 5:05 PM

Meet 'Mantis Master Keeper' Andrew Pfeifer

Andrew Pfeifer is eye to eye with a female Parasphendale affinis nymph. (Photo by Andrew Pfeifer)

Who isn't fascinated by a praying mantis, that pre-historic looking predator that lurks on a plant and snags honey bees, butterflies and other insects in lightening-quick lunges? And who isn't fascinated by those who study them, rear them and share...

Posted on Friday, September 1, 2017 at 6:41 PM

How Do Insects, Spiders React to a Partial Solar Eclipse?

A honey bee nectaring on African blue basil during the partial solar eclipse in Vacaville, Calif. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

The sky darkens. The temperature drops several degrees. A breeze rustles the leaves of the African blue basil. Dogs bark. And off in the distance, a hawk shrills. A partial solar eclipse is about to happen in Vacaville, Calif. I am watching the...

Posted on Monday, August 21, 2017 at 2:05 PM
Tags: eclipse (1), Eric Mussen (2), honey bee (13), milkweed (3), orbweaver (1), praying mantis (70), predator (5), prey (7), spider (1), Tithonia (8)

Let Us Prey!

A praying mantis, Stagmomantis limbata (as identified by Andrew Pfeifer) clings to a showy milkweed leaf as she dines on a longhorn bee. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Everybody eats in the pollinator garden. Everybody. The pollinators in our garden in Vacaville, Calif., sip the nectar. They include honey bees, bumble bees, carpenter bees, sweat bees,  European wool carder bees, hover flies and assorted...

Posted on Monday, August 7, 2017 at 4:53 PM

A Delightful Find

The egg case or ootheca of a praying mantis, is attached to the stem of a lavender plant. Note the small hole on the left, near the top--the exit hole of a parasitoid, according to Lynn Kimsey, director of the Bohart Museum of Entomology at UC Davis. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Any day's a good day when you find the ootheca (egg case) of a praying mantis in your yard. It's much better than finding an Easter egg. Ootheca comes from the Greek word "oo," meaning egg and the Latin word, "theca," meaning a cover or container. A...

Posted on Monday, February 27, 2017 at 3:40 PM

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