Traps For Young Players

I try to keep the unhatched egg cases free of spider webs, but I wasn’t on the job yesterday, which was fatal for these two nymphs. They were hopelessly tangled and died in the heat of the sun. It could have been worse. I don’t know how many nymphs hatched from this ootheca, but I found seven tiny babies standing alert on the grass below. Probably there were more that I couldn’t see, judging by the number of tassels.

The site is an 18mm pole I use to prop up a washing line. The green cord is part of the old line that had to be preserved after a female praying mantis built her ootheca on it. I needed to move the pole, but I was careful to maintain the same orientation that she had chosen. Meanwhile the new line has done a good job higher up the pole.

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