Something new…

I’ve been waiting to see one of these for about 8 years!  I was almost back to the main car-park at WWP when I saw something scuttle (not jump) out of the way of my boot.  Something made me turn back and what I first thought was a grasshopper turned out to be a Praying Mantis! [Perhaps “Grizzled Mantid”]  It was about 2 inches long and almost impossible to see (it was totally flattened [by design, not by boot] and camouflaged).  Putting the flash on my camera and trying various angles and distances managed to bring it out from the background, but to the naked eye it was almost invisible.  I didn’t know if it was harmful to me (or it) to pick it up, so I carefully encouraged it off the trail with a grass stem, but it vanished halfway across the tarmac and I had to check it hadn’t hitched a ride on my jeans.  Like I said, it was invisible to all but the camera.  Just a note about Mantises and birds.  If you see one on your hummingbird feeder, rehome it as they can catch and EAT hummers!

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Praying Mantis

Here’s a shot which is more representative of how flat it was against its background…

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Praying Mantis

 

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