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One of the most cruel insects in the world, it can prey on snakes, rats and birds, and the eating process is comparable to Lingzhi

Time:2023-03-27 15:24:54 author:Beast Read:662次
One of the most cruel insects in the world, it can prey on snakes, rats and birds, and the eating process is comparable to Lingzhi

"Mantises catch birds" in North America

As the saying goes, "Mantises catch cicadas, and the oriole is behind", but in the United States there is a scene that counters common sense: mantises birding. In the yard of an American home, a hummingbird flapped its wings quickly and approached a red water dispenser. Hummingbirds are very popular in the United States because of their beautiful appearance, so many people have such water dispensers in their yards for hummingbirds to drink and rest. The hummingbird hovered in the air, stretched out its long beak and began to drink, but did not notice a green figure approaching. It has a slender body, its front feet are shaped like two meniscus knives, and its large protruding compound eyes are looking around. It is the Chinese Greatsword Mantis, which is very common in China. After the hummingbird has appeared in the attack range, the Greatsword Mantis suddenly attacked, and the hummingbird only noticed the danger at this time and flew towards the rear. The hummingbird is the only bird in the world that can fly backwards. With this flexible flight, it has evaded many predators. But this time, the predator it faces is a natural hunter. The big knife mantis is extremely fast when attacking, and it only takes 0.1 seconds to complete the attack, and although there are not many photoreceptor cells in the eyes of the mantis, the image it sees is very It's blurry, but its dynamic vision is excellent, and the hummingbird's movement just puts it on target. The hummingbird has not yet flown far, and the forelimbs of the big knife mantis have sandwiched the hummingbird in the middle. There are sharp barbs on its forelimbs, which penetrate deeply into the hummingbird's body, and a pair of serrated knife-like forearms tightly grasp the hummingbird. It couldn't escape. Although the hummingbird flapped its wings quickly and struggled, the four slender feet of the big knife mantis firmly grasped the drinking fountain and remained unmoved. Hummingbirds are very small in size. Most of the average hummingbirds weigh no more than 6.5 grams and have a body length of only ten centimeters, while the average body length of the big knife mantis is about 8 centimeters. Stronger, but they are used to being bullied by other creatures and have no courage to fight back. The heads of praying mantises are triangular, and their heads can be rotated 180°, which is very flexible. If hummingbirds choose to use their long beaks to peck the heads of mantises with a large knife, there may be a chance of survival, but hummingbirds are very small and are subject to After being frightened, the pressure was too great, and I was scared to death by myself in no time. The Chinese big knife mantis immediately held it to its chest, opened its mouthparts and began to enjoy its prey. The ending for hummingbirds may not be bad, because mantises generally cannot kill their prey directly. Instead, they grab the prey with their forelimbs, and then directly go forward and use their chewing mouthparts to eat the prey. Because they cannot distinguish static objects, praying mantises hunt live prey. Although their mouthparts are hard and developed, they can only eat in small mouths and do not secrete any paralyzing toxins. Some insects that are preyed on by mantises are often eaten from the head to death, and some are even swallowed by it a little bit alive, and the process is extremely painful. After eating, mantises use their mouthparts to clean their forelimbs. They are very hygienic insects. As long as they feel a foreign body on their body, even if it is just a little dust and oil stains, they will carefully clean up. Then start hunting again.

Invasion of North America, Hundred Flowers Extinct

In 1896, the nursery in Mount Airy near Philadelphia, USA introduced a batch of seedlings. The customs at that time were not strict and did not find these trees. With the egg scabbard of the Chinese sword mantis on the plant, the Chinese sword mantis broke into the new world of North America under the eyes of the Americans, and later became a nightmare for North American hummingbirds. Of course, in order to deal with the locust plague, the Americans have also introduced the big knife mantis, and this is their own problem. There are not many natural enemies of the big knife mantis, various birds, frogs, and even some carnivorous insects, such as golden-ringed wasps, crickets, etc. When the big knife mantis preys on them, it is also easy to be preyed by them in turn, so Although the Chinese big knife mantis is widely distributed, it has never caused any harm in China, and it has even been protected by people because it is a beneficial insect. Praying mantises prey on golden-ringed wasps, but in North America, things are quite different. North America lacks a variety of large-scale carnivorous insects, and the native American short-sheathed mantis is only 5 cm in size, which is not the opponent of the Chinese sword mantis at all. Relying on the huge stature and powerful combat power in the insect world, the big knife mantis quickly spread in North America. Americans also call them "prayer bugs" because of their predatory behavior, although this "prayer" is often the beginning of the killing. The Chinese big knife mantis will use all animals it can catch as food, including their kind. They have even been photographed preying on animals that are much larger than them, such as mice and snakes. The native insects of North America have been forced to disappear by the big knife mantis, and the hungry big knife mantis has set its sights on a fresh and juicy new prey: the hummingbird. A hummingbird eats as much nectar as its body every day, which keeps them close to the flowers, and the machete mantis hides under or near these flowers, waiting for the opportunity to prey on the hummingbird. Praying mantises are natural "masters of camouflage". The orchid mantis from Malaysia even turns its body color into white and pink, and the two pairs of feet have also evolved petal-like shapes to hide themselves in the orchid. The big knife mantis is not so fancy, but uses its body color to hide among the branches and leaves, waiting for the prey to approach. The orchid mantis mantis is also a patient hunter, waiting for most of their time, they can go a week without eating without starving, and if they are full, they can last for two weeks. Of course, they also adjust their positions to find more suitable hunting sites, such as water dispensers. This American resident's water intake site for hummingbirds has become a cafeteria for mantises. They have a high success rate in preying on hummingbirds, and very few of the captured hummingbirds can escape without human help. The proliferation of the Chinese sword mantis has greatly affected the number of hummingbirds in North America, and hummingbirds are important plant pollinators, which indirectly led to the reduction of the number of flowering plants and the extinction of hundreds of flowers.

Mantis devotion is just a last resort?

For a long time, there has been a poignant love story in various literary works: that is, the male praying mantis willingly sacrificed himself to let his "wife" eat it on his wedding night, so as to ensure that his wife has enough nutrition , able to produce offspring successfully. But, is this the truth? Scientists have experimented with this phenomenon and found that it tends to only exist in large, aggressive praying mantises. Moreover, only malnourished female mantises will eat their husbands. Female mantises with better nutritional levels will basically not eat their mates, and even if they eat their mates, they will not lay more eggs. , but the weight of the eggs laid will increase significantly. Male mantises are not 100% dead after mating. For example, the chance of dying in wild mating is about 17%. Most of the time, male mantises can escape completely. They are not really willing to give their lives for their offspring, and male praying mantises are very careful when choosing mates, and will try to choose those girls who have already had enough to eat and drink. If anyone has observed mantis mating in the wild, they will find that male mantises avoid the sight of female mantises and approach from behind. This is a rare blind spot for mantises. After getting close enough, the male mantis will jump on the female, but if it attracts the attention of the female in the process, the male will often choose to run away. Although the males that were eaten during the mating process, the mating time and the chance of mating were twice as long as those of the males that survived. But after completing the breeding task, the male mantis will still choose to escape as soon as possible. It seems that the dedication of the male mantis is probably just a helpless act, not the poignant story that people think. Reference materials "Mantis Hunter - Mantis" Zhang Yu "Mantis: The Natural Hunter" Li Yang "Mantis: Cruel Spirit" Wu Qing "Research: Mantis Preys on Small Birds Hummingbird is the Most Important "Dish in the Plate"

(责任编辑:Botanical Garden)

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