Dandy Designs-title


Preying Mantis One of the most difficult things to do in nature is to maintain a balance between food supplies and survival of a species. We have learned in recent years that when man makes a change in one part of the ecosystem there are many ramifications for everything in the system. Insects are an especially sensitive part of the environment. Too many insects can wipe out a plant population and cause problems for all living things in the ecosystem. However, the insects themselves are important to keep plant growth under control and to do things like pollinating and decomposing waste materials.

“Praying mantis” is the colloquial name for an insect of the mantid family. The “praying” comes from the fact that it stands in a position that resembles praying. However, it is sometimes called “preying mantis” because it is a predator of other insects. Along with bats, it helps to keep other insect populations under control. The problem for mantids is since they are insects too, bats will eat them. Since mantids do not fly very well they could be easy prey for the bats and get wiped out very quickly. The reason that this does not happen is that mantids have what is called a Cyclopean ear located deep in the center of its thorax. This ear, which is not seen in any other form of life, is sensitive to the frequencies that bats use when hunting prey. The mantids have a survival technique that is very successful. When the mantid receives the ultrasonic signal from a nearby bat it dives straight down in a tight spiral which the bat cannot follow. Hearing the bat before it gets too close, enables this escape system to work.

Evolutionary theory would suggest that the mantids evolved the technique over a period of many years, but fossil evidence shows that the mantids were in existence for a long time before bats appeared on earth. That means the escape device was designed and operational before the predator came on the scene.

Survival systems demand incredibly sophisticated design and the natural world is full of examples of unique organs and systems that allow life to be abundant and varied on our planet. Everywhere we look we can see God’s wisdom through the things He has made (Romans 1:19 – 22).

Source: National Wildlife, April 2010, page 24, and Wikipedia.


Back to Contents Does God Exist?, JulAug10.