Deroplatys dessicata

Features: it is a relatively large, brown praying mantid with a wide pectoral shield - see photo.

Length: female 8 - 8.5 cm, male 7.5 -8 cm

Origin: Java, Sumatra, Borneo

Raising: Since this praying mantid comes from humid areas it is necessary to keep a higher level of humidity by frequent spraying. As a substratum bed I use peat. In a raising vivarium I place a branch, for adult praying mantids it is possible to plant green plants. The suitable raising temperature is around 25C.

Breeding: The male is introduced to the female for mating after the female is well fed, even though for this species it does not happen often that the male is eaten (it can happen however even though the female is well fed). The copulation lasts until another day, when the male can be removed. The female produces the first ootheca approximately after a month and half after the last moult. It is good to take a piece of bark and support it against a terrarium for the female to lay oothecas on. It lays further oothecas at approximately monthly intervals. I spray oothecas every day and maintain higher air humidity. About the 50th day about 10-40 nymphs are hatched, and they are relatively large in comparison with many other species. In the beginning we feed them with fruit flies, (I feed them every other day), later with larger insects according to the size of praying mantids and food once in 3 - 4 days. While feeding with crickets it is necessary to pay attention, as for this species it happens sometimes that a cricket can hurt a young mantid and this does not occur only while moulting. Therefore it is better to use smaller bit food. This praying mantid becomes adult in approximately 4.5 months. The period of reaching adulthood can be also influenced by temperature and frequency of feeding. As adult the female lives almost a year and the male approx. 8 months.

My opinion about this species: very interesting and long-living praying mantid, which is however a bit more delicate and demanding better care; there may be occasional moulting problems