Roles of muscle activities in foreleg movements during predatory strike of the mantis

Shigeki Yoshida, Keigo Takaki, Yoshifumi Yamawaki

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Foreleg trajectory in the mantis strike varies depending on prey distance. To examine how muscle activities affect foreleg trajectory, we recorded strike behaviours of the Chinese mantis with a high-speed camera and electromyograms of the foreleg trochanteral extensor and flexor. At the approach phase of the mantis strike, the prothorax–coxa (P–C) joint elevated and the femur–tibia (F–T) joint extended. At the sweep phase, the coxa–trochanter (C–T) joint rapidly extended, then, the F–T joint rapidly flexed to capture the prey. At capture initiation, the C–T joint extended more with greater prey distance. After cutting the tendon of the trochanteral flexor, the C–T joint extended similarly to that of the intact foreleg but did not flex after it reached its peak angle. After cutting the tendon of the trochanteral extensor, the C–T joint did not extend as much as that of the intact foreleg. During rapid extension of the C–T joint, a burst of spikes from the coxal trochanteral extensor was observed in electromyograms. Among several parameters, burst duration was the best predictor of C–T joint angular change during strike. Unexpectedly, trochanteral flexor activity was also observed during rapid extension of the C–T joint. These results indicated that the coxal trochanteral extensor mainly contributed to the rapid C–T extension during strike, but other muscles also contributed at the beginning of extension. The trochanteral flexor appeared to contribute to C–T flexion by countering the rapid extension.

Original languageEnglish
Article number104474
JournalJournal of insect physiology
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2023

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Physiology
  • Insect Science


Dive into the research topics of 'Roles of muscle activities in foreleg movements during predatory strike of the mantis'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this