India grass mantis log
(
Schizocephala bicornis)
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9-30-08: Received a pair of nymphs for this species. The nymphs are large, near 7 cm and appear to have at least 2 more molts to go.
I threw in few house flies and they grabbed it immediately. This species is from India, so i am keeping them hot and humid for now.
They have pointed eyes and very long legs. Actually this species remind me of the larger version of Arizona grasshopper mantis
(
Yersiniops sophronica), except this species does not jump like the grasshopper mantis. I hope this pair can grow into adult and
breed for another generation.
10-12-08: Well couple of weeks come and go, this species stick to the same stage despite feeding on plenty of flies. I wonder when
will they molt. I also noticed that this species prefer to hang on places closer to ground. This is making me worry about mismolting.
Will see what happen to them. My only pair and certainly hope they will mature into adult.
10-18-08: Finally, one of the two decided to molt. This species prefer to hang around near the ground but yesterday one decided to
hang upside down from the top of cage which is "unusual" post. So i waited for a moment and it started to molt as predicted. The
specimen appear to be a female and she is at least a cm longer but still isn't adult yet. Boy this species will be very long as adult.
10-22-08: Another one finally molted yesterday, but appears to be presubadult. This one should be a male, boy I am not sureas both
appear to have thick antenna. I really hope to have a pair instead. The one which molted few days earlier has started to feed again, but
took at least few days to settle down before feeding again.
11-02-08: Have a chance to photograph more of this pair. One of the mantis appear to be subadult but i am not sure. I was told that the
mantis will get to about 13 cm but based on the current size i think it is exaggerated, which is kind of dissappointed too as i was
hoping that it does get to that size.
12-03-08: Another molt happened few weeks ago I can’t remember when, but it is still not adult. They might not even be subadult! I just
don’t have the knowledge to identify their stage but if they keep molting this species can reach 12 cm as adult which is my initial
guess. Well hopefully I can keep them till adult. This species obviously don’t molt very often i.e. long period between two instar.
(3/19/09) It took a while before the male molted into adult, and I managed to get the pair mated right after Christmas last year. The
adult female deposited her first ootheca back in mid January and the second one few weeks later. Right after her second ootheca, the
female showed sign of sickness and lacking of energy climbing the net. The worry was compounded with her third oothecae which
appear to be incomplete with exposed eggs and she finally succumb to sickness later. Her first ooth hatched out only about 30
nymphs. I managed to cut open the ootheca and saw many dead one inside the oothecae. Now I hope the second ootheca can hatch
but as time past it is unlikely that the ootheca can hatch. The hatching batch are now in 2nd instar and I am getting rid of them keeping
only few nymphs.
7/24/09: Too many species and too little time. Before the trip, i sent the last batch to a friend in Holland. Hopefully he can continue this
species and breed them for more generation. This log ends here.