How can I trap some flies?

SoCaliSon

New Member
Last night we found a little baby Mantis sitting on our computer desk. I picked him up and the little guy has a pretty cool little color pattern on him. He was incredibly calm as well, and just sat on my thumb looking at me and cleaning himself for quite a long period of time without trying to espcape. I decided to see if I could keep him and raise him up, but at this point he is really small... and I don't have any FF's on hand. I do however have small gnats/flies on my patio. I have been trying to grab some by hand to throw them in but this is tough to do without killing them. Anyone have any tips for catching some flies and gnats to feed my new little Mantis buddy? And no... this little guy is not going to end up a Cham snack.:)

~Joe
 

chameleon97

New Member
Last night we found a little baby Mantis sitting on our computer desk. I picked him up and the little guy has a pretty cool little color pattern on him. He was incredibly calm as well, and just sat on my thumb looking at me and cleaning himself for quite a long period of time without trying to espcape. I decided to see if I could keep him and raise him up, but at this point he is really small... and I don't have any FF's on hand. I do however have small gnats/flies on my patio. I have been trying to grab some by hand to throw them in but this is tough to do without killing them. Anyone have any tips for catching some flies and gnats to feed my new little Mantis buddy? And no... this little guy is not going to end up a Cham snack.:)

~Joe
i have a little fishtank net and it works great. i caught 4 flies in a row yesterday using it =D
 

SoCaliSon

New Member
I thought I had read somewhere to leave a cup outside with some fruit for a day, then cap the cup, and you should have some hatch... does anyone know if this works?

Also I just came from outside, I caught a couple of little winged gnat type critters in the matter on the soil.. Threw those in, and he was munching one within 30 secs.

For all you mantid keepers... How much should this little guy be eating?
 

Silverdusk

New Member
Hope this helps!

How to Make a Fly Trap

Materials

* 2 liter plastic soda bottles (have students bring these to class)
* Heavy scissors
* 24" lengths of string
* Hole punch
* Bait: Raw meat soaked in a small amount of water (or old beer); old piece of fruit, like ripe banana
* Cotton ball

Making the Fly Trap

0. Using 2 liter plastic soda bottles, remove label and rinse out with water.
1. With heavy scissors separate the top of the bottle from the bottom (see diagram). The cut may need to be started with a razor blade or knife.
2. Invert the top into the bottom part of the bottle.
3. On opposite sides of the container, punch holes using a hole punch.
4. Lace 24" of string through the holes and tie with a secure knot to create a hanger, or use string with paper clips attached to each end if students are not ready to tie the string.

Trapping Flies

* To add the bait, slide the top up the string and drop in bait. If your bait is runny, place a piece of paper (or wire screen) under the bait so that insects do not drown.
* Set trap in a tree so that rodents (or children) will not be enticed. To protect the flies from heat stress, place the trap in a shaded area. Depending on the weather, season, the bait and the amount of time the trap is left outside, the trap may attract other insects. Be watchful for honey bees.

Handling Flies

* After retrieving the trap, place it in a refrigerator or ice chest (with ice) for one hour until the flies fall to the bottom. Prolonged chilling may kill them. All the insects in the trap will be chilled and not fly away. Work quickly as the insects may recover rapidly. At this time, separate the flies and other insects from the bait and dispose of bait appropriately. You can handle the insects with tweezers being careful not to pinch off wings, legs or squeezing them too hard. Release other insects outside and place flies in observation chamber and leave at room temperature to resume normal activity.
* After completing the observation and activity, release the flies. If you need to use flies for experiments the next day, place a piece of apple or wet raisins in the container for the adult flies.

 

Rocky

Established Member
I always caught flies by putting a large cup outside with some fresh cut fruit or hamburger meat at the bottom. Let it sit for a while and then soon enough flies will be in there then sneak up and put something over the top and go put them where ever you want..

That above trap is alot better though I'd assume :)
 

SoCaliSon

New Member
Thanks! I actually went ahead and made one of the Coke Bottle traps... I put some meat from a the remains of the sandwich at lunch in their for the bait. It's out on my patio and I am sure it should trap some flies tomorrow. I managed to get him to eat a couple of flies today, which was awesome to watch. If anyone has any other tips for raising mantids I would appreciate it? Should I offer him water somehow?
 

rmayo

New Member
Just remember. If you are going to use fruit. be sure the flys are big enough not to stick to the fruit as they will die. Same for pinheads and gnats.
 

xanthoman

Avid Member
Last night we found a little baby Mantis sitting on our computer desk. I picked him up and the little guy has a pretty cool little color pattern on him. He was incredibly calm as well, and just sat on my thumb looking at me and cleaning himself for quite a long period of time without trying to espcape. I decided to see if I could keep him and raise him up, but at this point he is really small... and I don't have any FF's on hand. I do however have small gnats/flies on my patio. I have been trying to grab some by hand to throw them in but this is tough to do without killing them. Anyone have any tips for catching some flies and gnats to feed my new little Mantis buddy? And no... this little guy is not going to end up a Cham snack.:)

~Joe
good for you, i keep mantids occasionally myself and they are cool. if hes 1/2" he might eat 1/2 dozen ff day , if he's 3/4" he'll probably eat a dozen ff, or 1/2 dozen 1 week crickets , if hes over 1-1/4", he's moved on to 1/2" and larger crickets and is capable of eating a phenominal amount for his size (easy a half dozen a day ). just for future reference, if its flies you want, check this out (ebay item # 140332068863) they have uploaded a video that shows it in action , easy to build, /also ff , love flukers oc also i dont know what kind of container you have it in but if its in some sort of plastic juice jug /then be careful about putting it in the sun on even the coolest days i have made that same mistake with several , to water just use a spray bottle on fine mist and give 1-2 squirts into the container being careful not to let any full size droplets occure , they can drown in a single drop of water even easier than small crickets , its cool though you can actually watch them drink. also;http://www.mantisplace.com/mantisforsale.html ps be careful, when moving on to crickets, if they stay in with him when he's not hungry, they can take him down, if hes hungry, he will munch within minutes
 
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