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According to Live Science (This article and its images were originally posted on Live Science September 20, 2018 at 10:47AM.)
With their folded, spiky arms and large-eyed, triangular faces, praying mantises are instantly recognizable, and are well-known for their predatory prowess. But while mantises typically prey on insects, one opportunistic individual in India has developed a taste for fish.For the first time, scientists observed a praying mantis hunting guppies, a type of tropical freshwater fish. The long-armed predator snatched up and snacked on the tiny fish in an artificial pond in southwestern India, demonstrating a behavior that was previously unknown in these insects.
The hunter, a male Hierodula tenuidentata — also known as a giant Asian mantis — measured about 2 inches (6 centimeters) in length, and it captured guppies measuring 0.8 to 1.2 inches (2 to 3 cm) long, according to a new study. [Lunch on the Wing: Mantises Snack on Birds (Photos)]
Over five nights in March 2017, the mantis visited the artificial pond in a roof garden planter. It perched on water lilies and water cabbage plants on the pond’s surface and “fished” for its dinner, capturing and devouring up to two fish per night, feasting on a total of nine guppies, the study authors reported.
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