Please Don’t Kill the Praying Mantis

Praying Mantis, beauty shot

My mom had a friend over the other day who discovered a praying mantis in our living room. She calmly asked my mom for a paper towel, and used it to pick up the critter. Mom thought her friend was going to release it outside, but instead the woman crushed it in her paper towel and threw it in the trash.

If I had been there I would have screamed.

Mom, possessing better manners than I, and still a bit stunned, said nothing. We don’t kill praying mantises here. We treasure them. If we find them around the yard, we pick them up and take them to the garden. They have a voracious appetite for the bugs that do the most garden damage. Just last week I found this gal chomping on juicy tomato worm. A worm that had already stripped 3 or 4 leaves from my one tomato plant.

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