This orchid has at least 7 camouflaged predators on it


#1

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2018/03/09/this-orchid-has-at-least-7-cam.html


#2

Protip: Be sure to feed your mantids well before sticking them all so close together, or they will try to eat each other.

(Is sad that it has been decades since I have seen a live mantis. I used to love catching them, feeding them flies until they were’nt hungry anymore, then releasing them. It’s been a long time since my lifestyle included enough time hanging around out of doors that I had a chance to find any).


#3

#4

Plant mimicry by insects is amazing. And old, having evolved at least as early as the Permian period, over 250 million years ago!

Insect mimicry of plants dates back to the Permian
https://www.nature.com/articles/ncomms13735

However, being an extreme nerd and hopeless obsessive compulsive, I must point out that 2 of the 7 insects shown in the video are not predators but leaf insects, Phillium sp. (probably P. giganteum commonly known as the Giant Leaf Insect), which feed on bramble, oak, and rose species, so they’ve adapted to hide from predators rather than from prey - the leaves still look like leaves, but it would be cool if they evolved to look like mantids.

Giant Leaf Insect (psg 72)
https://www.keepinginsects.com/stick-insect/species/giant-leaf-insect-psg-72/

Still, very awesome!!!


#5

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