What Is a Praying Mantis’ Favorite Foods?

Praying mantis species are carnivorous and primarily feed on other insects, such as butterflies, moths, grasshoppers and crickets. However, adult mantids aren’t picky and eat rodents, birds, reptiles, frogs and much more as well.

In addition to being carnivorous, mantids are also occasionally cannibalistic. At birth, a praying mantis eats small flies and other newborn mantises. As mantids grow, their diets change to incorporate prey better suited to their sizes. Mantises eat any animal small enough for them to capture yet big enough to offer sufficient energy. Prior to mating, female praying mantises seek the largest possible prey in order to gain extra energy to create eggs. During and after mating, females commonly eat the male.