Jeweled Flower Mantis: The Cutest Insect?

Photo credit: Rebloggy

Photo credit: Rebloggy

The insect world is filled with creatures of various shapes and sizes – yet many try to be as inconspicuous as possible to avoid being noticed by their many predators. Still, there are also that manage to create a colorful camouflage that might make them highly noticeable, say, on a person’s hand but easily hides them in the environment they are often staying in.

Photo credit: Rebloggy

Photo credit: Rebloggy

Among the insects of the latter category, the Jeweled Flower Mantis (Creobroter gemmatus) might just be the cutest insect of all. Seen from the side, its bottom wings are so beautiful that the creature appears to have a “skirt” of many colors. Its upper wings have yellow marks that look like lemons with eyes or the smiley symbol!

Photo credit: Rebloggy

Photo credit: Rebloggy

Seen from the top, however, this insect can be quite startling as the yellow smileys appear like huge eyes on its back. The bright colors and the fact that it suddenly opens its wings can startle predators away.

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By Boston at en.wikipedia [Public domain], from Wikimedia Commons

By Boston at en.wikipedia [Public domain], from Wikimedia Commons

Still, because of their cute appearance, these insects are often collected and kept as “pets” if caught.

Now, the Jeweled Flower Mantis is like many others in the insect kingdom. The females are larger than males, growing up to 4 cm long as compared with the usual 3 cm body length for males. An article on Rebloggy reveals that the males are known to be communal as the females are cannibalistic. Creepy, isn’t it?

Photo credit: Rebloggy

Photo credit: Rebloggy

Source: Rebloggy

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