Here’s the larger version of the photo in the header.
It’s actually from two years ago, before I began photo-blogging, but it’s one of my favorites. Usually, finding a praying mantis is a surprise as they are typically so well camouflaged while waiting for a hapless insect to land nearby, but deep rose-colored chrysanthemums are hardly a foil for a long, slender pale green insect!
They aren’t fearful of humans so I could get close and take quite a few photos. I was watching its tongue flick in and out as it tasted/smelled the air, and I have a few photos of it cleaning its front legs as well.
Spending time with a living creature so different from one’s self is always an interesting experience.