The Alien Looking Devil’s Flower Mantis

Samuel Reason | February 8th, 2018

Insects are known to look gross and have bulgy eyes, but some… well… Some look as if they do not even come from Earth. Did Aliens fly by and drop off a couple of unwanted species? Maybe they are the first step of an invasion? Definitely looks that way when you check out this photo of the Devil’s Flower Mantis.

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Or the Idolomantis Diabolica as the scientists like to call them. This is one of the largest types of praying mantis that you can find. The females can grow up to 5 inches and can develop into numerous different colors.

Their name comes from this ability to mimic the natural coloring of the Devil’s Flower which is a type of orchid. This lets them blend in with the jungle and hide from their prey. A unique camouflage ability that sounds more at home in the Predator movie series. However, although these big insects to look very impressive they are actually quite timid.

In fact, they are not very brave at all and will become very skittish, this actually causes them to run around in a panicked frenzy. However, you may already be familiar with their most known trait: the dramatic display. The dramatic display is what we call a pattern for a sudden reaction to threatening or startling behavior.

The devil’s flower mantis has a particularly well-known one, it will raise its front legs and tilt them outwards. Showing off the different colors of its bright markings. It proceeds to move its arms and body in all directions hoping to confuse and scare off a predator. Or is it calling for backup from its alien overlords?

Do not fear though, they will not be hunting you down anytime soon. These mantids have a very relaxed hunting style, selecting to just sit and wait. If a fly comes close then they will snap him up for dinner, but otherwise, they will not be chasing down insects. This is because they have the ability to sit complete motionless and lure their prey in with their flower-like color patterns. So no need to worry just another cool insect!

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