Rediscovery of two rare mantid species in Morocco

28 February 2013 | Article

A team of Italian and Moroccan scientists has recently rediscovered two mantid species, which have not been recorded for 60 years.

During an expedition in May 2011 a team of Italian and Moroccan mantid specialists has rediscovered two rare mantid species in Morocco. Werner’s wingless Mantis (Apteromantis bolivari) has not been recorded since 1948, the Moroccan Giant Mantis (Tenodera rungsi), has not been collected since 1952.

Roberto Battiston, member of the IUCN/SSC Grasshopper Specialist Group and principal investigator in the project, suggests that Werner’s wingless Mantis might be more common than thought, as he was able to find it at four different localities.

In contrast, the Moroccan Giant Mantis seems to be very rare and probably needs to be preserved by conservation measures. Generally, our knowledge on the distribution of mantids is very sparse due to their cryptic appearance. The project was funded by the Mohamed bin Zayed Species Conservation Fund.

The full publication can be downloaded here: http://www.israbat.ac.ma/IMG//pdf/Battiston_SV34_2_115.pdf