A praying mantis, or praying mantid, is an insect of the family Mantidae (order Mantodea), named for their "prayer-like" stance. more...
The word mantis derives from the Greek word for prophet; the plural is therefore mantes, with mantises also acceptable. There are approximately 2,000 species world-wide; most are tropical or subtropical, but several species live in temperate climates such as that of the northern United States. Some texts refer to the European mantis (Mantis religiosa) as the most common praying mantis in European countries.
Species were introduced to the United States from England and China around 1900 as garden predators in an effort to control pest populations. It is Connecticut's official state insect.
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