Watching a molt

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Gaylordlizard

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Hi y'all so I've been keeping a close eye on my giant Asian mantis- and they started molting about maybe 15 mins ago. It's truly amazing to watch. However, I did make some rookie mistakes (and I am still fairly new to everything).

A couple of days ago I went a little overboard and poured too many fruit flies in Momo's enclosure with them. These fruit flies are more like flightless gnats who will not grow any larger after a certain point. I noticed that they didn't really bother Momo either after they ate a few, and I was too overwhelmed on how to put that many back. Honestly, the fruit flies/gnats have been staying in the corners of Momo's enclosure, away from Momo. 

Possible second mistake is that there are now two popsicle sticks in there with Momo (instead of one) because I was trying to get them in their enclosure. It seems like this second one could be blocking them from returning to their upside down state after they molt. 

I don't know if it's normal for them to be hanging downward after a molt like this- maybe they're drying their legs so they can use them better? 

I just kinda worry I set them up for failure. 

15983765910782372686472077223763.jpg

 

Mantis Man13

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U mean like once it goes back to being horizontal hanging that the legs wont get warped under the pressure of hanging upside down since they are dry?

 

Mystymantis

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When mantises molt they are very soft and flexible because the chitin has not hardened yet. It is a very fascinating chemical process that they go through as they shed their skin. Literally the old outer skin lifts off and only the unusable parts are gotten rid of (which is the shed skin part) while many of the components are reabsorbed into their new chitin layer which is soft for a little while.

So yes they will hang upside down for a while so their legs and bodies are straight. Bad molts can occur if their isn't enough room for them to straighten out and hang fully.

Looks like your mantis had a perfect molt though, congrats!

 

nzxmUyZNKEBoqN3e

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When mantises molt they are very soft and flexible because the chitin has not hardened yet. It is a very fascinating chemical process that they go through as they shed their skin. Literally the old outer skin lifts off and only the unusable parts are gotten rid of (which is the shed skin part) while many of the components are reabsorbed into their new chitin layer which is soft for a little while.

So yes they will hang upside down for a while so their legs and bodies are straight. Bad molts can occur if their isn't enough room for them to straighten out and hang fully.

Looks like your mantis had a perfect molt though, congrats!
My partner (a vet) went into some amazing detail about the specifics of moulting, which I promptly then forgot - I'll have to ask again sometime as I remember it being really interesting

 

Gaylordlizard

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When mantises molt they are very soft and flexible because the chitin has not hardened yet. It is a very fascinating chemical process that they go through as they shed their skin. Literally the old outer skin lifts off and only the unusable parts are gotten rid of (which is the shed skin part) while many of the components are reabsorbed into their new chitin layer which is soft for a little while.

So yes they will hang upside down for a while so their legs and bodies are straight. Bad molts can occur if their isn't enough room for them to straighten out and hang fully.

Looks like your mantis had a perfect molt though, congrats!
Thank you for that very informative explanation! I'm really happy I got to see it all take place. :)

 

Gaylordlizard

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Congrats on the successful molt! Your mantis is too big for fruit flies now. 

- MantisGirl13 
Thank you! For whatever reason Momo ignored the cricket I put in front of them today and seemed to be more interested in the left over fruit flies..

 

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