|Gambian Spotted-eye flower mantis
I actually have some adults of this species now. They have shiny wings and not as short as i first thought. Both male and female reach
about 3 cm as adult. A low maintenance species as far a si know, and not a very cannibalistic species. I hope to mate them soon.
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a pair of this species manage to mate today!!
Many pairs started to mate, some female will mate right after 2-3 days into adulthood. Some older female will almost certain to
produce ootheca right after mating. I have plenty of oothecae now from at least a dozen mated female.
I noticed that once a female been mated, she will continue to lay as many ootheca as possible as long as she is capable to, so i have
loads of oothecae now. Most of the oothecae are in average size of half an inch, but i have seen huge ootheca of an inch and also very
small one. They are not common but interesting to see such a different ootheca size from a small mantis.
hundreds of nymphs emerged eventhough i have tried my best to sell all the available oothecae. They appear to be easy to incubate,
the ootheca is small but appear to be very "hardy" and almost all oothecae hatched out fine.
Female of this species continue to lay loads of ooth, they are the real breeding machines. Each female must have laid over 20 ooth in
her life time, pretty amazing! Guess i am all done with this species for now.
I have offload the rest of the stock for this species. I am now all done with this species. Phewww.... it is like a break lol
Well this may sounds redundant. But i have decided to keep track of the first batch of this species that hatched during shipment. I am
interested in keeping track of the molting, food, temperature, origin of stock, etc.
Stock: Believe it is the 3rd generation from the original stock coming in from Gambia. The one is from Dr. Yager.
Food: D. melanogaster (wingless type). Nymphs didn't take the food on 15th but most started to eat today (16th)
Cage: Keeping in group in 32oz plastic container with raffia straw.
I have many adult females, but i think i will only keep one for tracking up purpose. This female was mate on 14th July and produce an
ootheca two days later. Currently the ootheca is being kept under 83F/60%.
Some 1st instar nymphs have molted into the next instar (2nd instar) after 10 days with plenty of food. Misting was kept down to only
once every 3-4 days. The 2nd instar is about 6-7 mm compared to only 3-4 mm hatchling. Currently I am still feeding them D.
melanogaster but will attempt D. hydei after another molt. Although I suspect the 2nd instar is capable of wrestling down the larger fruit
flies. There is no plan to sex them yet at this stage. So far I lost 2 nymphs, both due to my mistake crushing them on the lid, bummer!
No cannibalism observed so far so I am keeping them together. I have decided not to keep track of the adult female and letting all 9
adult female go instead. (Edit on 25th July: Only one from the 14 nymphs remain at 1st instar)
All of the 6 specimen I kept have molted into 4th instar, i believed they molted a week ago.
(9-01-2008) Well I was not paying attention to this species and lost the molt count. Especially after the trip to Arizona. Couple of
females are showing sign of molting into adult soon. But they grow up rapidly and all the mantis (both male and female) are already
at subadult. My guess is that they only molted 5 times so far although I could be wrong.
(9-13-2008) The first adult is a female matured just few days ago, the other two female molted in the next 2-3 days. The other two
males are still subadult but my guess is they should molt any moment. Female continue to feed vigorously while subadult male
stop feeding completely.
(9-23-2008) Male matured few days ago. I put all 5 adults together with plenty of food and first pairing promptly took place in just
few hours. Females deposited ootheca the next day (just 10 days as adult!!!) I am sure I will be flooded by nymphs again so I plan to
put all the oothecae in a net cage with leaves and grasses, throw in a fruit flies culture when the oothecae hatch, and just leave to
their own devices
(9-27-2008) One of the male was eaten by female, i couldn't even find the body!! But by now i believed all the 3 adult females have
been mated and each has produced several oothecae. I still have the lone male together with all three female, and plenty of flies.
9-30-08: I have more subadult nymphs now, and one of the second batch just matured into adult male. I am starting to feel the
“pressure” from this breeding machine. They can just survive in the toughest condition.
10-07-08: The oothecae are raining down on me. When well fed the mated female can deposit ootheca every 3-4 days. I am thinking
a female can produce 20 oothecae throughout her adult life if she is healthy.
10-18-08: For some reason i lost interest in taking photo for this species. Females continue to deposit ootheca like no tomorrow. I
have been shipping out oothecae in loads too or I would be in trouble when they all hatched the same time like a locust swarm that
fill the sky... ok i exaggerated ;)
10-22-08: One escaped nymph apparently matured into adult male when I found him on the ceiling of my bug room!! So far all the
nymphs have matured into adult (from the younger batch). So far I am still ahead of the hatching schedule and managed to get rid of
the ootheca before they hatched.
12-02-08: As predicted i have been swarmed by load of oothecae and hatchling. I starting to compare them to lobster roach! This
species can thrive in any condition from 60F-90F and 30%-70%. Only high humidity and extremely filthy condition can kill them. This
will be my last update for now.
(3/19/09) It is just amazing how well this species can breed even with negligence. I have kept all the large nymphs in a large plastic
jar hoping they will devour each other before growing into adult and saving me from misery of handling the new born (I am cruel I
know!) but that doesn’t help as so many managed to grow into adult and now I am seeing lot of oothecae in the cage again……. Oh
boy will this species ever stop breeding?! Much that I would like to drop this species it just wouldn’t let me. Right now I have bunch
of fresh adults again. I think it should be save that I will see another generation next month!
3/29/09: What more can I say about this species being so easy to breed? Even with plenty of negligence this species thrive and
oothecae continue to "spread" like crazy.
7/24/09: This is another species where I left a bunch of them from L2-L5 and sort of left to their own devices before my long trip. I do
not expect to see any of them able to survive 5 weeks unattended although i left some food in there. However, I found 4 still alive
upon returning. It was one adult male and the other 3 were subadults. The adult male appear to be small which might explain the
lack of food, although i am sure cannibalism must have taken place like crazy in the cage. After careful check it appears to be 2
pairs of them. As they survive this tough ordeal I have decided to keep them and feed them well. Now they are adults and preparing
for another generation... phew. This is the end of the update for now.