The praying mantis, also known as mamboretá, is one of the most intriguing insects in the world. Its trademark is predation, and in that object the way it eats its prey, which in some cases can even be birds. They have a rather creepy method of devouring the catch: starts from the head and they feed before their brains.
Nature, wise, has given them saw-shaped legs and very strong jaws so that the moment of attack is difficult for their enemies to deactivate. This is the secret: the initial hold.
They also feed on other insects larger animals – those who ride – such as frogs, lizards, salamanders, newts, shrews, mice, snakes, small soft-shelled turtles and even bats. Attacks have also been documented on large birds, which end up defeating and eating for long periods of time.
The praying mantis, a second before launching its deadly attack on the locust.
In this YouTube channel video InsecthausTV, which already has almost 3,500,000 reproductions and can be considered a classic viral of the networks, we see the attack on a lobster in a laboratory capsule. It’s a three-minute timelapse, which summarizes the actual three hours in which the mantis devours the locust.
The praying mantis, finishing up the locust swallow.
The last seconds are in real time and the mantis is seen with the full stomach showing how contractions or heartbeats produced by ingestion.
The shocking photo of a mantis – also called mamboretá or tatadiós – holding a bird before starting to devour it.
The abdomen of praying mantises – commonly called santateresa, mamboretá, campamocha or tatadiós– found in most species of 11 segments and contains the main bowels. Hence, the digestive system comprises a digestive tract with a glandular stomach, which allows it to receive quantities of food that can double in size.