Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

Statilia maculata (Thunberg, 1784) - the first invasive praying mantis (Mantodea, Mantidae) in the fauna of Russia.

Abstract

Recent years have seen an increasing number of alien praying mantis species being introduced and establishing populations across Europe. Here we add to this count, reporting a stable and spreading population of an Asian species, Statilia maculata (Thunberg, 1784), in Krasnodar Krai of Southern Russia. This is the first introduced praying mantis species in the Russian fauna and the first representative of the genus Statilia Stål, 1877 in Europe. We review what is known about biology of this species and provide diagnostic characters to distinguish nymphs, adults and oothecae from native and introduced European species of praying mantis. Our attempts at captive breeding identify humidity as one of the most important factors limiting possible spread of S. maculata. Invasion to neighbouring territories and other countries with a humid subtropical climate remains a very real possibility with an unknown outcome for local ecosystems.