OK. I’m not a big fan of bugs in general, but Praying Mantids are cool. And they eat aphids and other garden pests, so I like having them around to keep from having to use chemical pest control methods. But these tiny guys are sooooooo cute! We got the egg case at a local nursery, put it in a jar with some sticks and leaves, and left it alone for a couple weeks.
Last Thursday around lunch time, I was fixing Mr. T a sandwich and caught movement out of the corner of my eye. The jar had exploded with little mantids! There were well over a hundred little critters running around in the jar. Mr. T loved looking at the jar. He kept giggling and saying “Wow!”.
So we took our new allies outside to release them. I was not feeling up to keeping a couple and scrounging aphids to raise them, so we let them all go. Perhaps we’ll try and raise one next spring 🙂 But they were excited to get out and start exploring. I’m hoping they enjoy both our veggie and cottage gardens and eat lots of little pests!
The egg case was really smooth when we got it, but the tiny bit of “popcorn” effect was the only evidence that all those little mantids had popped out of the case!
What neat nature things have you learned this week?