Have you ever noticed a strange growth, the size of a walnut, on your Christmas tree? Well, if you find this “shell” you have a serious problem at home: they are pockets of praying mantis eggs. The specific name of the aforementioned casing is ootheca and it can contain hundreds of eggs.
Obviously, we are talking about “natural” Christmas trees.
We are aware that it could be curious and fascinating to see dozens of small mantises emerging from your tree, but it would be better to cut the branch as soon as possible and place it in a garden. The creatures are harmless enough, do not carry diseases and are not poisonous; the reason you have to move the nest is because the insects may be in danger.
“Once in your warm house, the baby praying mantis will hatch from its egg and he will probably starve to death”, said al Kansas City News University of Illinois researcher Chris Enroth. “Look for mantis eggs before bringing the tree indoors. If you find one, cut off the branch it’s attached to and place it in an evergreen outside”.
So if you see these growths on the tree, as officials suggest, please don’t let the eggs hatch indoors.
[Eerie County Ohio/Facebook]