Saturday, August 9, 2008

My two favorites

When asked what my favorite insect is, I'm hard pressed to give a single answer. Heck, my answer can change day to day!

However there is no denying that both praying mantids and ambush bugs have a special place in my heart. They're both such fascinating predatory insects. I caught this cute male this afternoon and he was kind enough to pose for a few shots with me:
I also found some ambush bugs while walking along the street. They like to hide out on goldenrod, and queen anne's lace. I saw 21, and captured 16 of them to quickly photograph and release. I left the others alone because they were eating.

And as soon as I had a few in my jar, they started... well... you know...

Actually, the male has to be on the side of the female to mate, so when he's sitting like that he's just holding on and staking his claim. At one point there were five males trying to get at one female! And at another point there were six couplings in the jar at once. I quickly released them and let them go about their, um, duties.

8 comments:

Fuzzy Izmit said...

I love praying mantises! So pretty! I dont think we have the other bugs here.

Art By MAR said...

Beautiful photos of the praying mantis. I don't think I have ever seen the other ones. Active little guys aren't they??

T.Allen-Mercado said...

Such great shots, perhaps if I'd stop flailing and screaming and running I too could captuire these amazing moments in nature, yes?

Amanda said...

When I was in DC we went to McDonald's and when we came back out, there was this HUGE praying mantis standing on top of the car. I had to take a picture of it (cuz I'd never actually seen one in person before) and swear to God, it's looking at me. I was standing like 7 feet away to take the picture, and it totally looks like it's looking at me. It was creepy. haha

Jamie Ferraioli said...

I've never heard of or seen ambush bugs. Is that the technical term? And nice shots!

Weirdbuglady said...

Yup, they're called ambush bugs, in the order Heteroptera, family Phymatidae. I'm not sure about their distribution but they seem pretty common in my area and probably most of the northeast US, but they have VERY good camoflauge. You really have to try hard to find them, but once you know where and when to look (August/Sept, on goldenrod and queen anne's lace and other yellow/white flowers), then they're easy and seem to be everywhere.

BeckyKay said...

Praying mantis is one of my favorite insects, too! They're just so amazing looking!

Kristina said...

I LOVE mantids. They're definitely my favourite insect :)

What great pictures!