the orchid mantis color experiment

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thehelepolis

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I've seen some posts that tell about how an orchid mantis will change color based on the flowers it lives with. this seems to be a pretty debated topic on the forum, so im doing an experiment with my 2 orchid mantises. chris has been placed in a cage with blue flowers (im assuming he will just turn out white) while cross, my other orchid has been placed in a cage with pink and yellow colored flowers.

at the start of the experiment 3 days ago, Chris and cross had nearly the same baby coloration with cross being only slightly pinker

543942E5-6DA5-442C-B059-65072D9310EB.jpeg

 
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minomantis

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Also, be very wary of direct sunlight onto deli cups. They can get very warm and cook your baby inside. :)
I am excited to see the outcome of this experiment! I agree with hysteresis, keep an eye on the sun! I’m excited for you!

I think humidity plays an important role. But I am curious to see if flower color plays more of a role than we think. Who knows Chris might start to express some blues or purples in his/her color. 
 

I also feel like the mantids have to be female for this to work maybe? I feel like males are almost always brown and white. Idk.

 

hysteresis

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I also feel like the mantids have to be female for this to work maybe? I feel like males are almost always brown and white. Idk.


I think maybe a male. Hard to tell, other than by the lobstering of the sternites right at the tip of the abdomen.

@minomantis, I have found my males have deeper colours right up to subadult. than females. Especially on the lobes of its legs. I have 3 male nymphs, all with nice pink.. Of three females, only one with some pink.

Im sure observations would vary, though.

 

Ax55

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The other day I put a Succulent in my Orchid mantis' cage and started increasing the humidity a little more by making water droplets in the cage using a syringe (I use a humidifier for humidity). After two days her legs are now almost fully pink. I heard that when you mimic the wild conditions they'll look more pink.

 

thehelepolis

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I am excited to see the outcome of this experiment! I agree with hysteresis, keep an eye on the sun! I’m excited for you!

I think humidity plays an important role. But I am curious to see if flower color plays more of a role than we think. Who knows Chris might start to express some blues or purples in his/her color. 
 

I also feel like the mantids have to be female for this to work maybe? I feel like males are almost always brown and white. Idk.
the males will eventually end up white and brown as adults but they can be quite colorful as nymphs! my first orchid was a little male and as a nymph he was a colorful pink and yellow

 
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thehelepolis

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Update: There has already been noticeable color change from 3 days ago when the experiment began. 
 

first off, Chris.

chris has lost nearly all his pink coloration, now nearly white except for the pinkish brown between has back 2 legs

745F230F-60A2-48D8-A219-F2D2A4448606.jpeg

 

thehelepolis

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cross has also gone through slight change but not to the degree of Chris. She has gained a darker pink on her back legs.

i have a feeling that once they molt into L5 is when the colors will really come to effect.

717902AA-5BA7-4A16-807D-8280984154AA.jpeg

 

MantisGirl13

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Good luck with this experiment! I've done similar experience with no visible results, so I'm interested in the outcome of yours!

- MantisGirl13 

 

minomantis

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I would be curious with high humidity and temperature variety and then humidity with light and use a fish light, leds preferably because the ones these days you can customize a ramp up and now and such and don’t have to do it manually.

one thing I know is humidity is important. I can tell you (at least I think with orchids and my experience) that there is a direct correlation with some pink on the legs and humidity. I tested it out so many times. My mantids would molt, pure white. Couple days and would feed them, still white. Would spray (a good spray)  the next day and over night they would turn pink. Legs and back of thorax, not deep pink or anything, but they would start to express more color.

im curious how to get those deep deep pinks almost purples.

 

thehelepolis

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I would be curious with high humidity and temperature variety and then humidity with light and use a fish light, leds preferably because the ones these days you can customize a ramp up and now and such and don’t have to do it manually.

one thing I know is humidity is important. I can tell you (at least I think with orchids and my experience) that there is a direct correlation with some pink on the legs and humidity. I tested it out so many times. My mantids would molt, pure white. Couple days and would feed them, still white. Would spray (a good spray)  the next day and over night they would turn pink. Legs and back of thorax, not deep pink or anything, but they would start to express more color.

im curious how to get those deep deep pinks almost purples.
Not only that but there are a ton of cases where they are a real deep yellow as well. I wonder if they can express both colors at once to be orange.

 

hysteresis

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Not only that but there are a ton of cases where they are a real deep yellow as well. I wonder if they can express both colors at once to be orange.
The deep yellow is a different species: Helvia cardinalis (formerly Parymenopus davisoni)

Although, Hymenopus coronatus can take on some yellow on the wings.

 

thehelepolis

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The deep yellow is a different species: Helvia cardinalis (formerly Parymenopus davisoni)

Although, Hymenopus coronatus can take on some yellow on the wings.
no I already know about helvia but there are some pretty yellow hymenopus aswell. some are even both yellow and pink

 

hysteresis

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minomantis

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no I already know about helvia but there are some pretty yellow hymenopus aswell. some are even both yellow and pink
I just did a quick google search and I saw some pretty yellow orchid mantids! Very cool! (I hope it was the mantis and not editing lol) I guess they can express quite the range of color. But one thing that I think should remain constant is high humidity. I feel like orchids, really most mantids respond to high humidity.

 

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