Empusa egena mantis on a gorse bush

Empusa egena mantis on a gorse bush

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Credit: CLAUDE NURIDSANY & MARIE PERENNOU/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: Mantis. Larva of the mantis, Empusa egena, also called the diablotin, on a gorse bush. The creature relies on camouflage to escape predators or to trap prey. The colour and protruberances on the creature's head, legs and abdomen resemble the twig, thorns or dead leaves of the plant. Its behaviour is to move slowly and carefully and so not be detected, or to remain quite still. The imitation of plants by animals is called phytomimesis. Empusa egena is a southern European species of mantis.

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Keywords: animal, camouflage, crested, diablotin, empusa egena, insect, insecta, invertebrate, invertebrates, mantis, mimicry, nature, phytomimesis, type, wildlife, zoology

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