These awesome mantises were added to our collection of lab pets (you know I love mantises). They are miniature mantises from Africa, and their carapaces are designed to look like dessicated leaves. I think they are quite lovely but also possibly the inspiration for the Alien movies.
Phyllocrania paradoxa (Ghost Mantis)
They grow a max of 5 cm, these little guys were only a couple of centimeters long
This one looks almost CGI
The purple lid of their cage ended up being an awesome back drop for the photos
I quite suddenly ended up with four of the little guys running around on my hands
The inspiration for Alien?