Can A Praying Mantis Hurt You? Managing Your Pet Mantis

Joan Agie
Oct 19, 2023 By Joan Agie
Originally Published on Oct 29, 2021
Female European Mantis or Praying Mantis

A praying mantis is simply a species of mantis which is named after its praying-like stance.

These animals are notorious predators and aggressive towards their prey. One interesting fact about male and female praying mantises is that a female mantis can kill and eat a male mantis to fulfill its nutritional requirements and voracious needs.

Some people believe that the Praying mantis got its name because of its scary nature. However, the real reason for this name is its stance. Praying mantis are also known as praying mantids.

These animals belong to the insect order of Mantodea. There are more than 2000 species of mantis all over the world. Most of them are found in Asia. Like every other insect, the body of the praying mantis is divided into three segments: head, thorax, and abdomen.

They also have wings, so they can fly. Their green color is beneficial for camouflage in green grass and large plants. Read on to learn more information about the praying mantis.

After reading about these wild insects who live among other members of their species, do check out are silverfish dangerous and are earwigs dangerous?

Is it safe to hold a praying mantis?

Many people never want to hold a praying mantis or any other insects for that matter. They are afraid of them or do not like them much.

However, there are many other people who love watching and holding a praying mantis and playing with it. If you are the second type of person, then here is the answer to your question.

Yes, you can hold a praying mantis with your bare hands as they can't really hurt you. However, since they are very delicate and fragile creatures, you have to take some precautions while holding a praying mantis.

When you are about to hold a praying mantis in your hand, just place your hand in front of it and let it hop on your palm. Never grab a praying mantis or any other insect between your fingers. This may lead them to think that they are under attack.

Be very careful while holding a praying mantis, because they have very sharp spines on their front legs which can harm you. The front legs of praying mantis contain barbed teeth which make it difficult for their prey to escape. Also, they can bite you if they are provoked.

What does a praying mantis bite feel like?

Praying mantis are not very harmful insects. However, they can hurt you with their front legs and mouth.

Praying mantises have very strong mandibles. Mandibles are the mouth parts of an insect which help them to eat their food. Praying mantises use these mandibles to eat and bite other creatures. Remember, that praying mantises bite and do not sting.

These strong mandibles help them to cut straight through the exoskeleton of any insects like a bug or a fly. They can also bite human beings to protect themselves.

However, praying mantises do not generally bite humans, and it is a very unlikely event. They are so small that even the largest species of mantis have such small mouths that their bites do not harm humans much. It just feels like a small pinch.

What happens if a praying mantis bites you?

As you now know, praying mantis bites in humans are very unlikely. However, if you are one of those unlucky beings who are bitten by a praying mantis, then do not panic.

The first thing to remember is that they have such a small mouth that they cannot cause you to bleed. Secondly, praying mantis are not poisonous so they will not inject any kind of venom into your body.

If a praying mantis bites you, you need to wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water. These insects are not poisonous, but you do not want to have bacterial saliva on your hand.

You can also apply some antibacterial ointment on the cut if you feel like the cut is a big one.

The best thing you can do to a praying mantis bite is simply ignore it. Actually, the bite of a praying mantis is so small that your body can heal it in only a few hours!

Will praying mantis attack humans?

The praying mantis is known for ruthlessly killing their prey. However, they are small insects and they feed on live insects which are smaller than them. They do not pose any threat to human beings. Just look at the difference between your size and the size of a praying mantis. How can this small creature hurt you?

However, the praying mantis can attack humans when they sense a threat. Unless a praying mantis has been provoked, it is not going to attack you. Praying mantises love to be alone in their own little world.

If you try to interfere with their work or life they will not like it. Although you can hold them if you want to, do so gently. The praying mantis is only fearsome to its prey and not to humans.

Can a praying mantis blind you?

There are rumors about a praying mantis that spits venom, and that the venom can make you go blind. The truth is that these insects are not venomous creatures. Praying mantises cannot spit venom. They are not dangerous for humans and do not make us go blind.

Do you know how this rumor spread? This actually all started when a walking stick was seen emitting some venomous liquid as a self-defense mechanism. Walking sticks and the praying mantis are two very different creatures, but they look somewhat alike.

You do not have to be afraid of a praying mantis. It will not spit any venom to make you go blind.

How fast is a praying mantis' strike?

Praying mantises can move at a surprisingly fast speed. They move quickly because they love to be alone and enjoy their own company. They do not want to come in contact with any other creatures so they move away quickly to a lonelier place.

Furthermore, praying mantises have to catch prey which moves at a very fast speed. Therefore, they also move quickly to catch other small insects, such as small bugs and flies.

The speed of praying mantises depends on their prey. If the speed of their prey is high, they also increase their speed in order to catch the prey, and if the speed of the prey is low, they decrease their speed. A praying mantis can strike with a speed of 8-29 in/s (200-730 mm/s).

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly facts for everyone to enjoy! If you liked our suggestions for can a praying mantis hurt you then why not take a look at can praying mantis fly, or praying mantis facts.

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Written by Joan Agie

Bachelor of Science specializing in Human Anatomy

Joan Agie picture

Joan AgieBachelor of Science specializing in Human Anatomy

With 3+ years of research and content writing experience across several niches, especially on education, technology, and business topics. Joan holds a Bachelor’s degree in Human Anatomy from the Federal University of Technology, Akure, Nigeria, and has worked as a researcher and writer for organizations across Nigeria, the US, the UK, and Germany. Joan enjoys meditation, watching movies, and learning new languages in her free time.

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