Carolina mantis

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Carolina mantis
Stagmomantis carolina Kaldari 05 cropped.jpg
Adult female Carolina mantis
Scientific classification
S. carolina
Binomial name
Stagmomantis carolina
(Johansson, 1763)

See text

The Carolina mantis (Stagmomantis carolina) is a species of praying mantis of the subfamily Stagmomantinae.

Sexual cannibalism occurs in roughly one quarter of all intersexual encounters of this species, though specimens of this species will engage in cannibalism regardless of age or gender if the opportunity presents itself. [2]

Gray adult female in human hand
1st instar nymph

Carolina mantis oothecae can be purchased in garden supply centers as a means of biological control of pest insects. However, only those labeled as this species should be released because most oothecae sold in the United States belong to the invasive Chinese mantis. It is the state insect of South Carolina.


Stagmomantis carolina is native to South America, Central America and North America. [1] Southern United States, Central- Southeastern United States, Buenos Aires [1] Mexico, [1] [3] Panama, Trinidad, Venezuela, [1] Suriname [1] Belize, Costa Rica, Nicaragua, [1] [1] French Guiana and Guatemala.


Adult females are 47 to 60 millimeters (2-2.5 inches) in length while adult males are usually about 54 millimeters (2.2 inches) in length. First instar nymphs are 7-12 millimeters (.028-.047 inches) in length. When the nymphs eat more, their abdomens get much longer. The Carolina mantis has a dusty brown, gray or green color useful as camouflage in certain environments. The Carolina mantis' color varies because the nymphs are able to adjust their color to match the environment they are in at the time of molting. They can adjust their color over each molt, if necessary, until they reach their final molt to adulthood. An unusual trait is that its wings only extend three-quarters of the way down the abdomen in mature females; this trait is also seen in Iris oratoria, which can be distinguished by the large eyespots on the hind wings (inner wings) of both adult male and female Iris oratoria. Both adult male and female Stagmomantis carolina have a dark-coloured dot on each of their forewings (outer wings), which may be partially hidden in a brown or dark colour morph individual.


The species was first described in Centuria Insectorum (1763) as Gryllus carolina.

  • Gryllus carolinus
  • Stagmomantis americana (Taylor, 1862)
  • Stagmomantis conspersa (Burmeister, 1838)
  • Stagmomantis conspurcata (Serville, 1839)
  • Stagmomantis cuticularis (Serville, 1839)
  • Stagmomantis dimidiata (Burmeister, 1838) [3]
  • Stagmomantis ferox (Saussure, 1859)
  • Stagmomantis fuscata (Weber, 1801)
  • Stagmomantis inquinata (Serville, 1839)
  • Stagmomantis irrorata (Johansson, 1763)
  • Stagmomantis maculosa (Chopard, 1912)
  • Stagmomantis nordica (Giglio-Tos, 1917)
  • Stagmomantis polita (Giglio-Tos, 1917)
  • Stagmomantis simplex (Giglio-Tos, 1917)
  • Mantis stolli (Saussure, 1869) [3]
  • Stagmomantis thoracica (Rehn, 1911)
  • Mantis wheelerii (Thomas, 1875) [1]



  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i [1] species Stagmomantis carolina (Johansson, 1763) Retrieved Date:2014/June/27
  2. ^ Mike Maxwell. "Sexual cannibalism, mate choice, and sperm competition in praying mantids". Archived from the original on 2007-12-22.
  3. ^ a b c d Blatchley, Willis Stanley (1920). Orthoptera of northeastern America: with especial reference to the faunas of Indiana and Florida. The Nature Publishing Company. pp. 117–120.

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