Did you know that some of the most majestic insects in the world (mantis) require specialized diets?
If you’re thinking of keeping one as a pet, you’ll need to understand the different types of mantis food available, both in captivity as well as in nature.
In this article, we’ll look at the different dietary needs of mantises, the pros and cons of buying prepackaged mantis food, and a quick guide on how to feed them.
Let’s get started!
What Does Mantis Eat?
In the wild, mantises eat a variety of animal sources.
Their prey consists mainly of insects, but they can also eat small mammals, snakes, and lizards.
Insects like moths, crickets, and grasshoppers are some of their favorites, as well as spiders, beetles, and caterpillars.
Mantises can also feed on other invertebrates like worms, mites, and small millipedes.
The key is to provide variety and ensure that the environment has enough prey for the mantis to feed on.
In captivity, you should provide a source of similar foods.
Live insects are best, as they provide the mantis with the physical exercise and stimulation it needs.
If you can’t provide live food, you should provide some variety, such as freeze-dried crickets, frozen larvae, as well as fruits and veggies.
All of these foods should be supplemented with calcium and vitamins to ensure that your mantis gets all the nutrients it needs.
Buy Mantis Food
I always recommend buying live insects as opposed to catching your own in the wild.
Live food packages typically contain a variety of live insects, such as crickets and larvae, that are perfect for feeding a mantis.
Prepackaged mantis food conveniently provides the nutrition your mantis needs, while also making it easy to introduce variety into their diet.
When To Feed Mantis
When feeding your mantis, it’s important to keep in mind that they need to be fed every few days.
Because mantises are predators, they’re used to eating large amounts of food in a single sitting.
Overfeeding can be a problem, as too much food can result in the mantis becoming obese and constipated.
As a result, it’s best to provide a set amount of food – just enough to ensure the mantis doesn’t overeat.
Mantises should be fed in the morning to mimic their natural feeding habits.
If you’re feeding live insects, they should be gut-loaded with vitamins and minerals – this will provide the nutrition the mantis needs.
If you’re feeding frozen insects, they should be defrosted before serving.
Non-living food sources, like fruits and vegetables, should also be supplemented with vitamins and minerals.
When it comes to mantis food, there are some common mistakes that pet owners make that should be avoided.
Many pet owners mistakenly think that all mantis food should be in the form of live insects.
While live insects are ideal, a variety of other food sources should also be provided.
Another mistake made is underfeeding. Feeding your mantis too little will cause it to become malnourished and lead to health issues.
Additionally, pet owners should avoid feeding their mantis food that has been exposed to poisons or pesticides that could harm it.
Finally, be sure to keep the living space of the mantis clean, as this will help prevent the spread of disease.
Mantises may look intimidating, but with a little bit of knowledge and effort, you can create a sustainable diet for your insect pet.
The right diet will provide all the necessary nutrients for a healthy, active lifestyle.
Buying prepackaged mantis food will offer convenience as well as comfort in knowing the food is safe and parasite-free.
Keep these tips in mind and experiment with what works best for your mantis.
Frequently Asked Questions
Mantises should not be fed with any type of plant-based or processed food, as they are strictly carnivorous. Also, they should not be fed with any toxic or poisonous insects that could harm them.
Feeding honey to mantises is not recommended as it is a sugary substance that they are not adapted to digest.
It is best to provide them with a regular supply of live insects or other small invertebrates as their main source of food.
Yes, mantises require a source of water to survive. You can provide them with a shallow dish of water or mist their enclosure with water to create a humid environment.
Mantises do not necessarily need to eat every day, but they do require a regular supply of food to survive and maintain their health. Depending on their size and activity level, they may need to be fed every few days to once a week.
Mantises do not require live plants in their enclosure, as they are strictly carnivorous and do not consume plant matter. However, live plants can provide an enriched environment and help maintain humidity levels in their enclosure.