This mantis is practicing its staying still for a really long time technique (Secrets of the Furious Five)… or so I was told with much exuberance by a 6-year old. And, when not practicing its staying still for a really long time technique, the mantis moves with lightening speed because it eats other insects. It has to be fast if it wants food.
We discovered this particular specimen while in Costa Rica.
The glossy sheath on the back are its wings. Also, we discovered through observation that mantids can rotate their heads in a full circle. This particular beast is demonstrating this as it checks us out.
While in New York, I found out that there are people who keep cockroaches as pets. After coming back from Costa Rica I learned that there are also people who keep mantids as pets — and that they can be very loyal.