Nature | April 9, 2023 11:37 AM | Alisa

Discover the stunning Orchid Mantis: a bug that perfectly mimics a flower

The world is full of fascinating creatures that we haven’t even discovered yet. This extraordinary mistake is something you have probably never come across in your lifetime. The orchid mantis resembles a beautiful pink orchid flower. It is a very rare species of insect. This unique insect is native only to Malaysia and can be found on different plants in humid and tropical forests.

At first glance, it may seem like just a snapshot of a beautiful pink flower, but what you’re really looking at is a rare species of insect called the orchid mantis.

Native to Malaysia, these vibrant insects love humid tropical forests with lots of different plants to rest on. Their pink appearance may seem cute and delicate, but it is also what makes them so dangerous.

Its appearance, which is similar to a flower, is very useful in hunting and even hiding from the eyes of predators. The falcons and the butterflies approach the orchid mantis in search of pollination. They have no idea that they are not sitting on a flower. That’s why the orchid mantis is a master of disguise. They feed on small insects that are comparatively easy to hunt, using their aggressive mimicry technique.

Despite their strong hunting skills, these insects are still quite small as adults. They live in the tropical jungles of Southeast Asia. Females are large, measuring 2.3 to 2.7 inches (6 to 7 centimetres) long compared to their male counterparts only 0.7 to 1.1 inches (2 to 3 centimetres) long.

Unfortunately, due to their flamboyant appearance, orchid mantises have become a popular pet among insect collectors and in the exotic insect trade, though usually in less than eight months.

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