Carolina Mantis Log
Stagmomantis carolina
I have sold out/traded all available Carolina mantis by Fall last year. Hope to collect more wild caught species this summer.
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Received three wild collected ooth, lets hope it hatch out handsomely after overwinter.
The weather is turning cooler now. SO i am letting both of the ooth outdoor for the next 2 weeks to initiate over-wintering. The plan
is to bring the ooth back into bugroom temp (80F) later and start the incubating process.
I am letting two of the ooth go and only keeping one ooth, will continue to keep the ooth outdoor for another week. The temp.
during the day has been around mid 70s, and at high 40s during the night. Hope this weather pattern will be good to kick off the
"biological clock" of the ooth.
I am trading the last Carolina ooth for another subadult male orchid mantis, so i will not be able to see this species hatch out from
this ooth.
I received some Carolina mantis from a friend in MO and also recently caught couple of wild collected Carolina mantis here. Due
to the size difference between the two I thought they might be of different sub-species. Unsure about the fertility of the wild
collected female from MO, I placed a pair in the net cage. Male took little time to jump on the female and copulation took place
immediately. She did not appear to threaten the male so I left the pair over night. However, the next morning, I found out that male
has been mauled by the female, bummer!! But the other female produced an ootheca so I can at least cross out that female for
re-mating until I have more males. Also, I have collected 3 oothecae resembled Carolina mantis during my recent bug hunt trip
here in Houston.
(9-13-08) Collected three unhatched oothecae from the park. Believed they are of this species.
9-30-08: I am expecting more adult males so I can mate with the wild collected females. Three of the female doesn’t seem to be
interested in depositing ootheca even though their bellies are full, which could mean they might not been mated yet.
10-02-08: Received more adult males and promptly let them mate with the females. Those males took little time to mount on the
females and mated immediately. Except for one pair where the male is having it the WRONG way!! The next day, one of the male
has been decapitated, and i took him out for a "display" shot!
10-07-08: So far all females been mated, but males that survived mating appear to have used up his last breath during mating
process and don't last a day after separating the male from female. I wonder if this happened in the wild too.
10-12-08: THese wild caught females are very aggressive towards the prey. I just need to drop the food and watch them chase
after the prey. If the mantis is not interested it is always the sign that an ootheca is on its way soon. Just plain easy! and before i
know, i have quite a few oothecae already. One of the female deposited a huge ootheca, almost 2/3 of her body length!!
10-22-08: Most females are showing sign of “wear and tear”, must be about time this species is dying due to old age in the wild. I
just sent one female to the museum and hopefully she can hang on a little longer before dying, at least have a chance to show her
face to the public in the exhibition set up. Boy I sound so cruel for some reason.
11-02-08: I assumed that in the wild these mantis must have been perished by now from the shock of cold winter. But I still have
four adult female left and three of them produced ootheca yesterday, could be the last one for them but when i feed them this
morning all appeared to be aggressive and grab on to the food immediately when hand feed. Maybe there are still some "burning
fuel" left in their live, much longer than i expected.
12-02-08: Down to two, i have left the ootheca out to experience cold weather last month. And brought couple of ootheca back in
to room temperature to see if 5 weeks is long enough to kick off the biological clock for the ootheca.
(3/19/09) After overwintering, the ootheca finally hatched after about 5 weeks indoor (80-85F/60%). Every day they are about 5-10
nymphs hatched out for the first 5 days. After 5 days, about 1-3 nymphs hatched out on daily basis for the next two weeks and
finally stop when the first batch reached 3rd instar! This species is not communal at all and will eat each other, especially when
the older batch is larger in size. There must be a reason why the ootheca does not hatch in all in once bursting type. The
advantage for this type of hatching could improve the chance of survival and also avoid inbreeding this way. I am not sure yet if I
should keep this batch to adult. The oldest batch is definitely around 5th instar or more now. I am sure I will be able to locate more
this coming Summer.
3/19/09: The Carolina nymphs grow quickly after hatching. Some are just 2-3 molts away from adult. I guess it is their nature to
feed and grow as quick as possible to reach adult sooner before winter sets in, also to stand a better chance to survive being
larger than those "late hatcher".
7/24/09:  The last batch of Carolina nymphs went out to entomology department of Kansas State University as I don't want to
burden my mantis-sitter with more mantis. It went out few weeks before my Asian trip on last week of May.  But i have a feeling i
will be able to collect some in this late Summer. This log is close for now.