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Gallery photos and information: Praying Mantis Quiz

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The majority of mantises are ambush predators that only feed upon live prey a short distance within their reach. However, some ground and bark species actively pursue their prey. For example, members of a few genera such as the ground mantids, Entella, Ligaria and Ligariella, run over dry ground seeking prey much as tiger beetles do. Species that are predominantly ambush predators camouflage themselves and spend long periods standing perfectly still. They largely wait for their prey to stray within reach, but most mantises chase tempting prey if it strays closely enough. A mantis catches prey and grips them with grasping, spiked forelegs. The mantis usually holds its prey with one arm between the head and thorax, and the other on the abdomen. Then, if the prey does not resist, the mantis eats it alive. However, if the prey does resist, the mantis often eats it head first. Unlike sucking predatory arthropods such as assassin bugs, a mantis does not liquefy prey tissues or drain its prey's body fluids, but simply slices and chews it with its mandibles as convenient, often from one end. [citation needed]

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