Mantidae is the largest family of the order Mantodea, commonly known as praying mantises; most are tropical or subtropical. Historically, this was the only family in the order, and many references still use the term "mantid" to refer to any mantis. Technically, however, "mantid" refers only to members of the family Mantidae, and not the 14 remaining families of mantises. Some of the most recent classifications have promoted a number of the mantid subfamilies to the rank of family, e.g. Iridopterygidae, Sibyllidae, Tarachodidae, Thespidae, and Toxoderidae,[1] while other classifications have reduced the number of subfamilies without elevating to higher rank.

Large brown mantid white.jpg
Large brown mantid, Archimantis latistyla
Scientific classification e
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Arthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Mantodea
Family: Mantidae
Burmeister, 1838

See text

Many species are found in North America, the three most common being the European mantis (Mantis religiosa), the Chinese mantis (Tenodera sinensis), and the Carolina mantis (Stagmomantis carolina). Of these, only the last is native to the continent – M. religiosa and T. sinensis were introduced in the 20th century as predators in an attempt to control pest populations in gardens.

Many mantises prey on Polybia occidentalis, a swarm-founding wasp. As the wasps leave the nest to forage, the mantises prey on them.[2]

Subfamilies and tribesEdit

The Mantodea Species File lists these taxa:[3]


See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Ehrmann, R. 2002. "Mantodea: Gottesanbeterinnen der Welt". Natur und Tier, Münster
  2. ^ Bouwma, Andrew M., Peter E. Bouwma, Erik V. Nordheim, and Robert L. Jeanne. "Adult Mortality Rates in Young Colonies of a Swarm-founding Social Wasp (Polybia Occidentalis)". Journal of Zoology 260.1 (2003): 11–16. 1 May 2003.
  3. ^ Mantodea Species File: family Mantidae (Version 5.0/5.0)
  4. ^ Mantodea Species File: subfamily Angelinae (Version 5.0/5.0 retrieved 1 September 2019)

External linksEdit