One of our favourite awesome creatures is the Praying Mantis, which comes from the Mantodea order of insects that contains a whopping 2,200 different species. Here you can see two of them:
First is the Spiny Flower Mantis (Pseudocreobotra wahlbergii) photographed by Cathy Keifer:
Native to Kenya, this lovely mantis has spines – which look especially plant-like – on its lower abdomen, hence its name. The spiny mantis is one of those species that has a unique, eye-like pattern on its wings, and it is also a fairly small, reaching less than 4 cm in length.
Second is the Devil’s Flower Mantis (Blepharopsis mendica) photographed by Thor Hakonsen:
Found in North Africa and the Canary Islands, the devil’s flower mantis is also known as the Egyptian flower mantis, or the thistle or Arab mantis. Like its larger cousin, the giant devil’s flower mantis, this little critter has horn-like antennae that one would guess have at least something to do with the origins of its moniker.
Check out more amazing Praying Mantis photographs at Environmental Graffiti.