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Eremiaphila braueri

Desert mantis

General Information

Scientific name: Eremiaphila braueri
Common name: Desert mantis (with others)
Distribution: Yemen, Jordan, Oman, United Arab Emirates
Habitat: Sand (desert)
Size: Females ~ 3,5 cm
Males ~ 2,5 cm
Livespan: Females ~ 10 months
Males ~ 6 months
Colour variations: None
Aggressivity: High*
Difficulty: hard (food specialists)

*up to L3 group-housing possible

Systematics

Order: Mantodea
Family: Eremiaphilidae
Genus: Eremiaphila

More species of this genus (similar housing and appearance):

  • Eremiaphila brunneri (WERNER, 1905)
  • Eremiaphila  fraseri (UVAROV, 1921)
  • Eremiaphila cerisy
  • Eremiaphila uvarovi
  • Eremiaphila sp. (India)

Keeping

Enclosure (LxWxH):

  • Single-housing: from 20 x 20 x 20 cm
  • For producing enough heat you can use halogen or HQI projectors and heat mats

Temperature:
Day 35 – 45 °C, night toom temperature (uder 18°C no problem)

Relative humidity:
~ 20 – 30 %, spray very rarely (once a week)

Set-up:

  • Sand with bigger stones or other shadow-making elements (animals always stay at the ground)
  • A  cover is not necessary as animals cannot hold on flat surfaces
  • Living or artificial plants (Beware of pesticides!)
  • Clean with vinegar or biodegradable glass cleaner (afterwards rinse with clear water)

Feeding Recommendation

This species needs quite dry food like firebrats. Flies and crickets are not healthy when fed for a longer period!

Feeder insects in the shop…

Gender Determination

In general: 8 visible sternites (ventral segments) at males, 6 at females (compare with Hierodula membranacea).

Additionally:

  • adult: males have longer wings and a thinner than females

Biology

Adult stage (= full-grown + winged):
Females in L9, males in L8
Amount of moults variates (especially under abnormal temperatures or injuries)

Sexually mature after adult moult:
Males ~ 1 week
Females ~ 2 weeks

Copulation duration:
~ 15 min

Oothecae (egg-cases)
Size: up to 2,5 cm (average 1,5 cm)
Form: round and long with pointy end
Colour: light brown and covered with sand
Oviposition place: burried in sand (often close to stones)
First ooth after adult moult: ~ 3 weeks
Interval: ~ 7 days
Amount: ~ 10 oothecae

Incubation and hatch
Duration: ~ 4 – 6 weeks
Temperatures like animals (see above), rel. humidity ~ 20 – 40% (spray once a week)
Nymph quantity: up to 15
Size freshly hatched (L1): ~ 4 mm

All given information only for orientation. Actual facts always depend on temperature and food availibility etc.!

More

Eremiaphila is a very special genus. They run around on their long legs and moult while standing!

They do not climb very well. However, they enjoy sunbathing on top of stones.

Oothecae are burried in the sand.

Wings cover only about 1/4 of their abdomen (females and males).

Rearing this species is not as hard as you think, as long as you stick to the given instructions. Breeding, however, often doesn’t work out very well due to low hatching rates (too hot/cold or dry/wet incubation). Freshly hatched nymphs need freshly hatched firebrats – not always easy to get!

Sources

  • Own expercience
  • www.mantisonline.de (October 2017)