But then I picked him up again..........only to put him back down. He was getting very put out by this.
"That looks like a good place to get away from this very unpleasant woman...well, actually any place would be better than where I am now."
This is not a good thing when you see a praying mantis doing this.
I could not get him off of me. As soon as I thought I had him off my camera, he had jumped on my arm, and when I thought I got him off my arm, he jumped to my shoulder. AAAAAAAAGH.
Meanwhile, Cathy Jean was taking all this in while I twirled around trying to get that darn praying mantis away from my face!! If anyone looked in my backyard, they might think some middle-aged woman was dancing alone to the accordian music... sincerely and furiously.
Okay, calmness. I managed to put the praying mantis on the elm tree. I watched him nervously. He scrutinized me. He was pretty fed up. But then he saw an ant coming down the tree. The praying mantis did a little dance (I suppose Zydeco music could make even bugs start moving to a beat). He continued his weird little shaky dance up the tree...and then positioned himself above the ant. They looked at each other. The ant was probably as confused by the mantis's stupid looking dance as Cathy Jean was with my twirling one.
They considered each other and then...BAM. The ant was headless (I think the praying mantis was thinking of doing the same thing to me). I watched him chomp away while he carefully licked his fingers to keep them clean. My camera's battery ran low during all of this (of course) so that was that. The rest of the insects are overjoyed that they get the rest of the day off from me sticking a camera in their business. Right now they are listening and singing along to live human music while they celebrate my absence in the backyard.