Egg cases of nonnative mantids, including the Chinese mantis, are bought and sold in many places in the hope of controlling agriculture and garden pests. Commercial biocontrol suppliers sell Chinese mantis egg cases to gardeners and nurseries who want to use mantises for pest control. Praying Mantis: beautiful but invasive. This species is a native of China and other parts of Asia but is now well established in North America. The female will typically bite off the male's head during or after mating. Pet stores usually sell juveniles, called nymphs, or adults, while garden supply stores are likely to provide egg cases during the winter, to be released in the spring. The Chinese mantis is notable among mantises because of its size, growing as long as four inches, and its coloration. Mantis (order Mantodea) In Maryland, three non-native mantid species are found: the Chinese, the European, and the Japanese or Narrow-Winged. If you love North America's native species such as the Monarch butterfly or the Carolina mantis spread the word about why we need to stop the Chinese mantis. The Carolina mantid ( Stagmomantis carolina ) is native to the United States and found from New York south to Florida and west to Utah, Arizona and Texas. Both the European mantid (Mantis religiosa) and Chinese mantid (Tenodera sinensis) were introduced into the United States in the late 1800s and are now common in Ohio. The Chinese mantis is a major threat to our environment and must be dealt with accordingly. Their presence is thought to be a reason as to why the native Carolina Mantid's populations are declining throughout the State. Because of their indiscriminate diet (eating beneficial as well as pest insects) their usefulness is questionable. Tue Sep 19th, 2017 1:30am; News; Submitted by KIWAHT. The egg case at the beginning of this article is from a Chinese mantis (Tenodera sinensis sinensis). Chinese mantises were imported to the United States in the 1800s for pest control and for people to keep as pets (a popular pastime in their native China). They are the only insects that can turn their heads 180 degrees, which helps them spot prey. They are fearsome predators, eating insects, spiders, frogs, lizards, and even small birds! Chinese mantids are usually either bright green, tan, or a combination. The Chinese mantis is a nonnative insect reaching 4 or 5 inches long. At KWIAHT, we have received several reports of the European Praying Mantis, Mantis religiosa, in the San Juan Islands, as well as a live specimen for confirmation. 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