Archive for Inverts

Giant Texas Katydid Laying Eggs

I found this video in my internet wanderings. This is the kinda bug I would find as a kid during trips to see relatives, and I always got super excited. Honestly, I’d still be super excited! We don’t get anything quite like this in the NorthWest.

This is Neobarrettia spinosa, or the Giant Texas Katydid or Greater Arid-Land Predaceous Katydid. I found this video over here. They have a bunch of other photos and info about their katydids on that page, including photos of the eggs.

These “little” beasts are predatory, and not only eat other insects, but will consume small reptiles as well.


If you take a close look at their jaws, you won’t be surprised that Neobarrettia spinosa can draw blood if it bites you. They aren’t aggressive, however, so if you leave it alone, you’ll be fine.

Neobarrettia spinosa katydid jaws

Of course, finding these pictures led to some more searching and some other fantastic katydids.

Central American Pit Bull katydid or Liromoetopum coronatum:

This fantastic photo by Piotr Naskerecki over at makes me grin. Some bugs are pretty cute.

Central American Pit Bull katydid, Liromoetopum coronatum

From – I love that site’s name!


Small Leaf Katydid:

Lichen Mimic Katydid:

Lichen Mimic Katydid

A beetle mimic katydid from Madagascar. If anyone can help ID this, let me know!



Ghost Mantis Eating Fruit Flies

I’m totally infatuated with my new Phyllocrania paradoxa, or Ghost Mantis. I got two, but will probably look for at least two more soon. I believe they are both females, so I need a couple males as well. I’ve raised several generations of Chinese mantis in the past. They were cool insects, but the Ghosts step it up a notch with their active hunting behavior.

The Phyllocrania paradoxa native range is in Africa and Madagascar. Their bodies mimic dead leaves very effectively.

Phyllocrania paradoxa

Getting these, of course, has sparked even more interest, and a lot of browsing through pictures online. Here are some of my current favorites.

The Thistle Mantis, Blepharopsis mendica, from

thistle mantis

The Shield Mantis, Choeradodis rhomboidea. source: social media, original unknown.

Shield Mantis, Choeradodis rhomboidea

The Orchid Mantis, Hymenopus coronatus, found at


And the Violin Mantis, Gongylus gongylodes, from

violin mantis

I could keep going, but I’ll leave it at that for now. My collection will definitely be growing, but I’m going to take it slow for now.