The name "mantis" means soothsayer – an attribution relating to it’s typical “prayer-like” stance.
Mantids, with their huge compound eyes mounted on a triangular shaped head, are literally able to look over their shoulder. With a combination of incredibly powerful forelegs, camouflage, and stealth mantids can quickly seize unwitting prey in a vice-like grip and devour it alive.
As with the black widow spider, male mantids occasionally become the unfortunate meal of the female. However, his sacrifice provides much needed protein for the female's egg production.