How Do Praying Mantis Eat?

Praying Mantis EatingSource:

Praying mantises are fascinating and curious insects that are known for their distinctive upright posture and predatory behavior. These insects are found all around the world and are known for their unique hunting style. In this article, we will explore how praying mantises eat and what makes their feeding habits so fascinating.

Praying Mantis Anatomy

Praying Mantis AnatomySource:

Before diving into the eating habits of praying mantises, it is important to understand their anatomy. Praying mantises have a triangular head with two large compound eyes that are used to locate prey. They also have a long body and thin legs that are used to catch and hold onto their meals.

Praying Mantis Hunting

Praying Mantis HuntingSource:

Praying mantises are known for their unique hunting style. They are ambush predators and will often blend in with their surroundings to catch their prey off guard. Once they spot their prey, they will lunge forward with their front legs and grasp onto their meal.

Praying Mantis Feeding

Praying Mantis FeedingSource:

After catching their prey, praying mantises will begin the feeding process. They will first immobilize their prey by biting into its neck with their sharp mandibles. This will prevent the prey from escaping or fighting back.

Once the prey is immobilized, the praying mantis will begin to consume it. They will start by eating the head and then move on to the rest of the body. Unlike other insects, praying mantises can turn their heads 180 degrees, allowing them to access all parts of their meal.

Praying Mantis Digestion

Praying Mantis DigestionSource:

After eating their meal, praying mantises will begin the digestion process. They have a unique digestive system that allows them to break down and absorb all parts of their meal, including the exoskeleton.

The digestion process can take anywhere from a few hours to a few days, depending on the size of the meal. Once the meal is fully digested, the praying mantis will expel any waste and continue with its daily activities.


Praying mantises are fascinating insects that are known for their unique hunting and feeding habits. Their predatory behavior and ability to consume all parts of their meal make them one of the most efficient predators in the insect world.

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