Are Praying Mantis Nocturnal? (5 Interesting Facts)

If you are thinking of taking up a praying mantis as a pet, you may want to know whether or not mantises are nocturnal. There are also those who are simply driven by curiosity in wanting to know if praying mantises are nocturnal. This article explores that subject.

Are praying mantis nocturnal? No, praying mantis are mainly diurnal – meaning that they are most active during the day, and they rest at night. However, the male mantises do at times get more active at night, as they search for females to mate with.

Are praying mantis nocturnal
Are Praying Mantis Nocturnal?


What Is A Nocturnal Animal?

A nocturnal animal is one that becomes more active during the night. So this will typically be an animal that tends to rest during the day, and then becomes active at night.

The opposite of ‘nocturnal’ is ‘diurnal’. This is to say that an animal that is more active during the day (and which tends to rest at night) is the one we refer to as ‘diurnal’.


Are Praying Mantis Nocturnal?

As we have noted, a nocturnal animal is one that becomes more active at night. So at this point, we need to ask ourselves, are praying mantis more active at night? And the answer, for the most part, is ‘no’.

The typical behavior of praying mantises is such that they tend to be most active during the day. Then they rest at night. 

As such, praying mantises can’t be termed as nocturnal animals. They are diurnal.

Nonetheless, it is worth noting that although praying mantises are primarily diurnal, we do see the males at times being more active during the night. This occurs as the males happen to be in search of females to mate with.

Therefore although praying mantis are primarily diurnal, there is that exception: whereby we find the males sometimes having a tendency to become more active at night.


Are Praying Mantis Nocturnal or Diurnal?

All in all, if you were wondering, are praying mantis nocturnal or diurnal, now you know that the simple answer is that they are diurnal.

Similarly, if you were trying to understand, are praying mantis nocturnal during the day, we have clarified that they are actually diurnal.

It is worth understanding that the way praying mantises hunt is mainly by using their vision. As such, it makes sense for them to be diurnal – meaning that they are active and hunting during the hours when there is daylight.


Are Praying Mantis Nocturnal While Molting?

Now there are some animals that are primarily diurnal, but which become nocturnal while molting. Is this the case for praying mantis? Are praying mantis nocturnal while molting? The answer is that the praying mantis tend to be diurnal, even while molting.

Therefore praying mantis don’t turn nocturnal while molting.


What Time Of Day Are Praying Mantis Active?

The time of day when praying mantis are most active is during the hours when there is daylight. 

Daylight hours can vary from place to place. But as long as there is daylight, praying mantis – being primarily diurnal – will tend to be highly active.

If, for instance, daylight hours are between 6.30 am and 6.30 pm at a given place, praying mantises will typically be most active during that period.

It is, however, worth noting that some praying mantis males may show a tendency of being more active during the night, as they search for females.


What Do Praying Mantis Do At Night?

So far, we have established that praying mantis are primarily diurnal: meaning that they are most active during the day. This then leads to an interesting question, as to what they do during the night.

The true position is that praying mantis spend their nights resting. Praying mantises are among the insects that actually sleep.

Therefore if you were wondering, do praying mantis sleep at night, the answer is ‘yes’.

Nonetheless, we do need to emphasize that there are some circumstances under which the male praying mantis may tend to become more active at night, as they endeavor to find females.


Final Verdict

Praying mantis are primarily diurnal, not nocturnal. That is because they tend to be most active during the day – and then they rest at night.

Since praying mantises’ hunting is visually-guided, they have evolved to be more active during the day, when there is daylight to aid them.

Male praying mantises that are in search of females may, however, at times show a tendency of being more active at night.

Therefore if you are thinking of taking up a pet mantis, you need to know that it will primarily be a diurnal — rather than nocturnal – pet.

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