Order - Mantodea
Mantidae is the largest family of the order Mantodea, commonly known as praying mantises; most are tropical or subtropical. Historically, this was the only family in the order. Some of the most recent classifications have promoted a number of the mantid subfamilies to the rank of family.
Many species are found in North America, the three most common being the European Mantis (Mantis religiosa), the Chinese Mantis (Tenodera sinensis), and the Carolina Mantis (Stagmomantis carolina). Of these, only the last is native to the continent - the European and Chinese species were introduced in the 20th century as predators in an attempt to control pest populations in gardens.