This section is just some basic info for those interested are wanting to start keeping preying mantis to give you some basic knowledge and info on what's required
ALL SPECIES VARIES IN CARE SO PLEASE RESEARCH THE SPECIES YOU ARE INTERESTED IN KEEPING FIRST TO ENSURE YOU CAN MEET THESE REQUIRMENT OR DROP US A MESSAGE AND WE WILL GUIDE ON YOUR CHOSEN SPECIES.
Mantis are quite simple to look after and care for although there is 3 main areas you need to consider which is TEMPERATURE/HUMIDITY, HOUSING AND FEEDING. Below is a brief idea on what is required on each area.
Mantis like heat ranging from 20-40°C most in around the 24-28°C range daytime dropping to 18-20 at night. Although more extreme temps can be required for species such as thistles, devils flower and a few others.
During summer months many will be able to meet these requirments without any additional equipment but during the winter months in the UK a heat mat or heat lamp to keep your mantis cosy is a must especially at night.
Humidity is obtained by spraying/misting the side of the enclosure as required so you will need to purchase a water spray/misting bottle. Also a good substrate will be key to maintaining humidity preferably use the likes of coco coir and some mosses to trap in the moisture. Although is is quite common many choose to use some kitchen roll or tissue paper on the base as its easy to clean and holds moisture well.
The mantis will also drink from the water particles sprayed on the side of the enclosure so even with low humidity species u will still need to mist occassionally for a drink.
Housing in this hobby can range from simple deli cups to full bio setups in the likes of exo-terra enclosures.
The main key rule to housing is the minimum requirements is 3x their height and 2x their width. Then you must also consider if housing in a large enclosure weather they can find and catch their prey. If wanting to keep in a very large enclosure you can remove the mantis to a smaller cup for feeding to ensure it catches its prey while.
Whichever type of enclosure is used you need to ensure there is good airflow and plenty of side and top ventilation as stale stagnant air can be fatal to mantis and allow harmful mould to form. There should also be suitable hanging positions the mantis can hang from to enable a successful molt as well as free from too much clutter so it has sufficient room to molt. some species also cant climb flat surfaces so this also is very important to consider.
we have our own range of acrylic enclosures arriving before the end of February in 3 different sizes which will cover all species we sell and made specifically for mantis.
Mantis will only eat live moving insects preferably flying insects. Most species when young will take flightless fruit flies around 3 flies every 2-3 days. larger mantis will move onto house flies, green bottle and blue bottle flies.
Other insects such as locusts, roaches, mealworms, wax worms etc can also be used although some caution is advised with these as they could have the potential to injure your mantis.
I can supply flightless fruit fly cultures for and also mealworms on request currently.