Monday, October 31, 2016

Halloween post

Here on Halloween, I put in more pictures of my assassin bugs... This girl has been a scary clown and has jumped the poor cricket... She proceeded to get fat on the hapless cricket...
One of them sucking the life out of the cricket

Anyways, there will be more in the coming months, so don't get jumped by clowns and keep on living.

Saturday, October 29, 2016

Acromantis Japonica

One of my mantids has molted, from the deli container enclosure wall and it surprisingly molted without any complications. Investigating this, I realized that it is due to the mantis having tarsi (feet, akin to a gecko in function), which allow the mantis to climb the plastic deli container walls. It was able to molt from the wall due to it being a small species, which enable it to climb the wall.
Acromantis japonica nymph (L4-6?)
The assassin bugs are feeding on the crickets I got from pet-smart, which they eagerly feed on. They have an eagerness to take on prey much bigger than themselves, but they will overwhelm smaller prey very easily. They are an ambush predator, much like the praying mantis. Once they capture there prey, they use their proboscis to stab the prey and inject venom to paralyze the prey, and then they inject digestive juices to turn the prey into a smoothie to drink up the prey. The ghost mantis was fed three smaller crickets (acheta domesticus).

Thursday, October 27, 2016

First Assassin Bugs and Molting Mantids

Today, I am now a proud owner of Orange spot assassin bugs (Platymeris sp. Mombo). These guys came into the mail via priority mail and now they have settled into their home. The seller even sent me two extra to come with the three nymphs.

I like how these are communal and that they're pretty easy to take care of. However, they do spit venom so I wear safety goggles for these. When I opened the box, they were pretty chill and cool. But when I was about to put them in their enclosure, they were kind of nervous to be in there. For the enclosure, I used two cork pieces (sheet rolls) and they seem to wait for their prey to get into striking range.
In shipping
 I have learned, from observation that once they settle into their habitat, they will constantly patrol that area. But they were one of the quickest insects to settle into a new home.
Them in their enclosure

My assassin bugs

My female L6-L7 mantis (Phyllocrania paradoxa)
The mantis as shown above has molted yesterday and is one step closer to an adult. Now with these mantids, they are an easy species to keep and I enjoy the cryptid look that they have. I also do have acromantis japonica, which will show up in my next post.