Muda Mrefu



At school there is a small medicinal garden that a colleague of ours, LeeBeth,  planted a couple of years ago.  A few weeks ago I was with another colleague of mine, Carlos the Jackal, when he leaned over to a lavender plant in that garden and went to touch a flower.  The Jackal loves flowers. He leaped back with surprise when the flower turned its head and looked at him.  Once Carlos had regained his composure we began to investigate the “flower” in earnest.  It was (is) the most beautiful spiky purple praying mantis, or that is my very amateur ID so far.  Almost a month has passed, and the mantis is still on the same sprig of lavender! In this time he or she has not moved more than 3 inches!  It is definitely alive, as it turns its head and stretches out whenever I go for a close look.  Today I took pictures.  Tomorrow I will take more.

I zoomed into the picture, and the details are truly amazing.  The mantis (nickname Mickey) has lime green and purple bands around its legs, and on its back it has a perfect swirl of purple.  I called our friend Mike over to look at it, and he was completely transfixed.  Completely.


March 26, 2009 - Posted by | Wadudu


  1. Marcello-
    I am a friend of Diana’s. She sent me your site so that I could see your praying mantis, and it’s the most amazing bug I have ever seen. ( Not sure if you remember me; we hung out in the city together a few times, with Diana.) Looks like all is well with you! I just HAD to comment on the mantis. Great shot!!!!
    Tracy Lewis
    Ringwood, NJ

    Comment by Tracy Lewis | March 30, 2009 | Reply

  2. Hi there,
    I have found one of these beauties in my garden (in South Africa) but I don’t know what kind of praying mantis it is and have never seen anything like this before. Any idea on the porper name and origin?

    I will let you know if I find out any more info, seems to be scarce on this one.
    Lucky us!


    Comment by adrian | August 16, 2009 | Reply

  3. Hi, We have indeed been blessed,as a lady at a nursery said, we have to our knowledge 8 of these beautiful little mantis’ in our garden. They vary in colour from dark purple through light purple to green and white on a bush with small white flowers. They have all stayed in the same place from the first sighting a week ago.
    I live near Durban in South Africa.


    Comment by Edith | May 25, 2010 | Reply

  4. Apparently a Pseudocreobotra ocellata ( Spiny Flower Mantis ) of the purple variety !

    Comment by Amanda | March 26, 2012 | Reply

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