The Asian Ghost - Ceratocrania

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The Bark Horned Mantis, Ceratocrania macra, of the Family Mantidae and sub-family Phyllotheliinae. This mantid was photographed on the Tor Thip trail west of Panoenthung at Kaeng Krachan National Park.

Sometimes mistaken with the "Ghost Mantis", of which it is not because the commonly referred to Ghost Mantis is in fact African. The bark horned mantis has a certain beauty about it, some mantids have an almost evil and alien look to them as a result of the evolutionary design. The Ceratocrania macra has a whimsical look to it, almost comical in some respects. A killer in a party hat.

Being a carnivorous insect, the mantis feeds primarily on other insects.They feed mostly on insects like flies, butterflies, crickets, moths, spiders, and other insects smaller than themselves.To capture their prey, mantids use their camouflage to blend in with the surroundings and wait for the prey to be within striking distance. They then use their raptorial front legs to quickly snatch the victim and devour it alive. About 5 cm high and well camoflagued, keep a look out in leaf litter and on decaying branches at the edge of trails and you may just see one.


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