This week, the question was: What is the critter sitting on this eggplant leaf?
This may look a lot like a paper wasp, but it is actually a mantidfly. If you look carefully, you’ll notice the front pair of legs is different from the two back pairs. The front legs look like those of a praying mantis. Like the mantis, the mantidfly uses these raptorial front legs to snatch up prey and hold it while they feed. Mantidflies mimic the appearance of paper wasps to fool predators into leaving them alone, though they are actually harmless to anything too large for them to eat. Read more about mantidflies here.