Praying Mantids
Stick Insects
Tessellated Phasmatid
Titan Stick Insect


Family Amorphoscelidae - Bark Mantids 

Spiny Bark Mantids, female, body length 25mm 

The Mantids in this family are smaller in size. Many have very good cryptic colour and body shape. Some of them have the colour of bark and some of them mimic ants. They live on the ground or on the tree trunks. Usually females are wingless and male are fully winged. Females and males may look quite different.

We can sometimes find the ants mimic species (Nesoxypilus sp.) on gum tree trunk mixed with lines of ants. However, they are highly alerted and run very fast. Some even fly away when we come a bit closer. We have no chance to take any photo yet. 

Up to now we have recorded two Bark Mantid species.

Boxer Bark Mantid I
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Paraoxypilus sp., male, female, body length 20mm
The male and female of Boxer Bark Mantid species Paraoxypilus are markedly dissimilar to each other. The male is winged, slender and a little longer in body length. They have the cryptic colours and hard to be seen on bark. They colour patterns may be different for individual. More information and pictures can be found in this page.
Boxer Bark Mantid II
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Paraoxypilus sp., female, body length 20mm
We used to put this Boxer Bark Mantid II together with the Boxer Bark Mantid I above as one species. Then we found they look quite different and thought they may be in different species and put them in separated pages. Please check this page for more details.
Spiny Bark Mantid
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Gyromantis kraussi, female, male, body length 25mm
Spiny Bark Mantid has prominent short spines on the head and pronotum. They have pinkly-red patches on inter forelegs. The usually found hunting on gun tree trunk. This mantid is slow moving even disturbed. More pictures and information can be found in here.

Bark Mantid Oothecae 

We found this Bark Mantid Oothecae, or egg case, on gum tree trunk in late summer. It was 0.5m above ground.

Bark Mantid Oothecae
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Length 25mm
The pictures show that Bark Mantids are also suffer from parasitise by Parasitic Wasps. The small holes in the pictures were made by those wasps when they emerged.

Reference and links:
1. Insects of Australia, CSIRO, Division of Entomology, Melbourne University Press, 2nd Edition 1991, pp 353.
2. Insects of Australia and New Zealand - R. J. Tillyard, Angus & Robertson, Ltd, Sydney, 1926, p93. 

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Last updated: February 15, 2009.