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Keeping the Praying Mantis: Mantodean Captive Biology, Reproduction, and Husbandry Hardcover – February 19, 2013
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"I just got my copy of Keeping the Praying Mantis, and I'm really enjoying it as an accessible and informative read." "...it is excellent reading, I recommend picking up a copy if you can. Wonderful Pictures and very informative." -Mantidforum.net
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Top Customer Reviews
There is only one double page that does not have a photo on it. This book is loaded with color photos that expose the reader to the mantises they love and mantises they likely have not seen before. So with two hundred pages of material and only one page without a photo reference, it will make the reader quite happy. The pictures are all color and range in size from wallet to full page. The quality is very good and the binding has held up to two read throughs and I am usually a person that man handles books. When I first saw the book I thought... crap, this binding is gonna spilt, but so far so good.
The information in the book takes the reader through every possible aspect of raising mantis, from how the mantis is classified to, nymphs, feeding, ooths, breeding tricky humidity and enclosures. It is full of practical advice and doesn't make ridiculous reccomendations that burst the wallet. Its all very practical.
My other worry was that the book would read like a scientific text book from hell. To my pleasant surprise its a fairly simple read although the scientific names will always be tricky but they are very neccessary for the new hobbyist to learn. The book also covers anatomy, health issues, and gives the reader a great overall understanding of species both native and exotic.
Another great part of the book was that it outlines the types of feeders one needs to have on hand and how to culture them along with the pros and cons. This is very helpful! There is also a glossory for those of us not exposed to the technical aspects as well as a lengthy works cited for those over achievers that need to read even more.
I would highly recommend that if you have the money to spare, get this book. It is not only a great refrence but an interesting coffee table book and conversation starter. Anytime I read it in public, I am asked questions. :) You won't go wrong with this book, pick it up as soon as you can!
Being an active mantis hobbyist, my initial concern about any complete work on the subject was either: 1. It would be too academic and boringly dry, or 2. Just the opposite - it would not do justice to helping the reader understand the wonder of these incredible animals. McMonigle's book carefully avoids either pitfall.
This book covers every aspect of the preying mantis, written in an easy, friendly cadence, yet just enough technical information to please diehards like myself. And the book is absolutely loaded with four-color photographs - mandatory for enhancing descriptions and anecdotes in the text. This is *not* a textbook. It's focused on the hobbyist who is interested in learning how to keep mantids healthy and happy in captivity and how to successfully breed them.
Although I was not terribly happy with the quality of the page paper - it *is* non-glossy, which makes reading, in my opinion, much easier on the eyes. Get this book and go out and find a mantis or two. You'll be amazed.