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Baby Grass Mantis. Gainesville, Florida. 2013.
I was climbing around in the bushes and bamboo in my yard the other day, trying to get a good photo of our Sweet Gum Tree. Suddenly I felt a little tickle on my arm and looked down to see this tiny (1 inch long) Mantis. I tried to shake it off but it kept moving away from my hand and my face. It walked up the back of my arm and into my shirt! I hustled into the house so I could take off my shirt and not squash this delicate little Grass Mantis. It didn't want to cooperate with me for a head on portrait but I managed to get a few photos. I guess their big compound eyes see every movement and don't like big camera lenses! I took a few more photos and then took it back outside for release. Here the mantis is standing on my shirt, with some colorful items on the desk in the background.
Here's a link to my latest blog about trees: http://earthteachme.blogspot.com/2013/10/my-favorite-trees.html