Mantis and Cactus Flowers

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mantis and cactus flower 1 - zoomed

 
Last Thursday was the first day we’ve seen the cactus in the front yard burst into bloom overnight. Perhaps it liked the rain we got last week. To make the event more rare, we have never seen a preying mantis here in the urban desert either. But, when we stopped to admire the flowers, one tiny mantis had already staked a claim to them.

 
mantis and cactus flower 1

 
We suppose if the flowers attract ants, bees, and other pollinators, then this is the mantis version of a hunting shanty or hidden fishing hole. Maybe the mantis will chop the heads off bugs and stick them on the cactus spikes like trophies. How awesome would that be? We’ll check in on mantis later and see how the hunt goes.

 
mantis and cactus flower 2

 
Oops, we disturbed the mantis. See how it moves down into the spikes? Smart thinking, mantis. Now sit still!

 
mantis and cactus flower 3

mantis and cactus flower 4

mantis and cactus flower 5

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