Chinese Mantis: The Largest Mantis – All About It

“Chinese Mantis” are the largest type of Praying Mantises. Coming at a size of from 9 to 17 cm (4 inches to over 6 inches in length) these insects were a native of China and are now found in quite a few countries of the world especially Asia. The Chinese Praying Mantis was introduced in the United States in 1896 by a nurseryperson at Mt. Airy near Philadelphia. The Latin name of this mantis is “Tenodera Sinensis”. This insect is mainly a carnivore and loves to feed on other smaller insects like mealworms. Some of the other things that they have been seen eating in the wild include

  • hornets
  • spiders
  • Grasshoppers
  • katydids
  • small reptiles
  • amphibians
  • hummingbirds.

Moreover, The Chinese Mantis is also cannibalistic in nature, which means that it doesn’t mind eating its own specie. A recent study found that female mantises end up eating their mates after copulation around 13 to 28 percent of the times. This leads to more nutrition for the female and the female laying twice as many as she would have otherwise

A Video Showing A Pet Chinese Praying Mantis


The Chinese Praying Mantis is long and seems like a stick in the first look. Moreover, it is covered mainly in the color green with some spots being brown. This Mantis can reach a length of around 4.3 inches ( 11 centimeters ). The amount of green and brown can vary individually by the mantis. Moreover, the eyes of a Chinese Praying Mantis are located on the side ends of its face to give it a 360 vision. And the Chinese Praying Mantis can also move its head 180 degrees to the left or right however it likes. This vision helps it stay safe from any predators looking its way. Moreover, the overall color of the praying mantis can also help it camouflage in the leaves whilst hunting its prey. As its overall look makes it look nothing but like a leaf when surrounded in plants. The color of the Chinese Mantis’ eyes is usually clear, meaning no color, but their eyes seem to be of black color when in the dark

Fun Fact.

The Praying Mantis is the only insect that has the ability to move its head 180 degree right or 180 degree left

Praying Mantis or Chinese Mantis? : mantids

The Chinese Praying Mantis also has a cousin specie that looks a bit too uch like the Chinese Praying Mantis. The name of this Mantis Specie is”Narrow Winged Mantis” / The Japanese Mantis ( Latin Name:  Tenodera angustipennis ). Despite their similar appearance, you can tell these two mantises apart through looking at their front legs. The Chinese Mantises tend to have a yellow spot on their front legs, whereas this is not found in its other similar looking brother “The Japanese Mantis”

Normal Habitat

The Chinese Praying Mantis is usually found to live in a wide variety of places. For example shrubs, stems, tree trunks e.t.c. The Chinese Praying Mantis usually prefers a warm temperature of around 70°F and 85°F which is nearly the normal room temperature, so you don’t need to worry about much regarding this aspect if you are thinking of buying one as a pet.

At night the Chinese praying mantis doesn’t mind a bit of a drop in the temperature but it shouldn’t be dropped too much. To elaborate, the temperatures can be as low as 18°C for the praying mantis to stay comfortable. And note that any temperature lower than 10°C can be fatal for a Chinese praying mantis as it cannot survive a temperature that cold

When it comes to humidity, the Chinese Praying Mantis is quite laid back on this end too as it doesn’t care much for the water and prefers dry air better. But the Chinese Praying Mantis does need water to drink though not much, but if you are keeping a Chinese Praying Mantis as a pet, you should spray some water through a bottle once a week, as the Chinese Praying Mantis would happily drink the droplets from the leaves. This means that you don’t need to keep a special Petri dish for it to drink from. If you want to look more into how to take care of a Chinese Praying Mantis, Wikihow has a great article on this very topic, so do give it a look if you are interested. “°How to Take Care of a Praying Mantis


A Female Chinese Praying Mantis lays anywhere from around 100 to 400 eggs after being fertilized once. Moreover, as we discussed above, it has been observed that the amount of eggs laid by a female Praying Mantis depends highly on its nutrition. As when a female Praying Mantis eats its mate after intercourse, they nearly produce twice as many eggs as they usually would, this is because of the nutrition that they get after eating their male partners


Yes, despite what many must think, the Chinese praying mantis along with all other types of praying mantises and most other insects do sleep. But when it comes to the Chinese praying mantis or praying mantises, all in all, they don’t close their eyelids while they sleep as they don’t have any. Moreover, another very interesting thing to know about them is that sleeping Praying Mantises droop forward while they are asleep. Another question that often rises along with the topic of sleep is about dreaming. So unfortunately the answer is “No“, the praying mantis along with other insects do not experience dreams as dreaming is a state hat a mammal or bird gets into during REM sleep. And though insects are observed to have been in the state of sleep the studies that we have conducted until now doesn’t advocate that they experience REM sleep which is a state in which an organism experience dream like we just said


When it comes to senses the Chinese Praying Mantis just like other praying mantises doesn’t lack much, as they can see, hear, taste, and even smell. Humans don’t usually interest praying mantises


There is no known venomous specie of a praying mantis so Chinese Praying Mantis are completely harmless. They can, however, bite but this is very very unlikely as they don’t view a human’s hand as prey and they only use their mouth when their prey is concerned.

Praying mantises have as many senses as we do: sight, smell, taste, feeling, and hearing. … Uninterested in humans, mantises have no known venomous species discovered so far. But it displays the deadliest behavior, when it stalks its prey or when it is attacked or provoked by any predator (including human)

Reproduction Of The Chinese Praying Mantis

The reproduction part of a Chinese praying mantis is quite regular if you cut out the females eating their partners occasionally out of the equation. It starts off with the male and the female Chinese Praying mantis coming in physical contact with each other and mating. The sperm from the male goes on to fertilize the female. One very interesting thing to note at this point is that a female Chinese Praying Mantis only needs to be fertilized once to keep producing babies. The female Chinese Praying Mantis goes on to produce foam-looking sacs in which eggs grow. Usually, there are around 50 to 100 eggs in one sac. And the female Chinese Praying Mantis can go on to produce 5 to 7 egg sacs depending on the amount of food she gets.

A Picture Of The Praying Mantis' Egg Sac to better elaborate on the Chinese Praying Mantis
A Picture Of The Praying Mantis’ Egg Sac

Moreover, like we discussed above, it has been observed that the amount of eggs laid by a female Praying Mantis depends highly on its nutrition. As when a female Praying Mantis eats its mate after intercourse, they nearly produce twice as many eggs as they usually would, this is because of the nutrition that they get after eating their male partners

In case you own a Chinese Praying Mantis and want to breed it yourself. You will need to have both a male and a female in a bound area like a cage for around 3 weeks. Some of the signs that you can look into keep track of which one’s male and which one’s female are

  • Male have more abodmen segments than females
  • The male tend to have longer and thicker antannese

You would need to make sure that both of them are well-fed so that the likely hood of the female Chinese Praying Mantis eating the male Chinese Praying Mantis decreases, but there would still be a chance that the female Chinese praying Mantis tries to eat the male partner. The female Chinese Prying Mantis can eat its male partner during or even after mating. So you would have to separate the two after they have mated. This would eventually lead to the female Chinese Praying Mantis start forming the foam looking sacs in which the eggs will grow. After this is done, you would have some waiting to do if you want to see the baby Chinese Praying Mantises Hatch as it will take around 3 to 6 months which means around 60 to 90 days before the babies are actually born

Hopefully, this article was helpful in answering a few of your Chinese Praying Mantis’ related questions and informing you more about it. lastly if you want to through an article answering “What insects pollinate followers”, we have a great article written on that too. So do give it a look if you are interested “What Insects Pollinate Flowers?

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