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Predator or Prey?

"I wondered what was upseting all the hummers. I didn't kill the bug, but I did flip it off the feeder, Yuck!! It was after the hummingbirds," exclaimed Mae of Hannover, Indiana.

Did you recognize this insect as a praying mantis? Hummingbirds are fast, but a praying mantis can be even faster. Last fall, an observer saw a praying mantis kill two hummingbirds in one day. Another observer had dozens in his yard: "I get a bit concerned for the hummers. Yet I try to either move the insects or just see where they are. I never knew until a few years ago that the mantis is a predator to hummers. No good!! But I do not want to harm the mantis either."

Preying mantis hangs off hummingbird feeder
Photo: Mae Watson