Ameles is a genus of mantises common in the Mediterranean and the surrounding countries of Asia and Africa. Praying mantises are small, winged males, female wings are shortened. There are about 25 species.
Small mantises, 20-35 mm in length. Body green or grayish-ocher color. Males are fragile, with well-developed transparent wings with dark veins that are longer than the abdomen, fly. The upper wings of the male cover the entire abdomen. Female of stronger structure, covered with shortened, hind wings with a large brown spot. Eyes conical or spherical, often with a hump on top. The eyes are large and expressive in males (except A. paradecolor) and small in females. The anterior back is short, no longer than the anterior basins. Fore thighs with 4 external spines, 4 discoidal and 10 internal. Front shins with 8-9 inner and outer spikes. Hind and middle legs slightly covered with hairs. The first joint of the hind paw is often longer than the others.
Xerothermophiles - live in arid warm habitats. They live close to the soil surface, prefer steppe grasses and bushes. They are also found in the highlands up to 2000 meters above sea level. Praying mantises move quickly on the ground or on plants, jump.
According to various sources from 23 to 29 species. Best studied in Europe, little data on Central Asian species. Mediterranean species are divided into group A. spallanzania and group A. decolor. Separation of species by morphology is quite difficult, so there are many errors in the scientific literature.
Species of the genus are found from the Canary Islands to Afghanistan, North Africa, the Middle East, Southern Europe. One species is known from Ukraine, at the end of the XX century appeared in Russia.
Battiston, Roberto; Fontana, Paolo (2005). Contribution to the knowledge of the genus Ameles (Burmeister, 1838) with the description of a new species from Jordan (Insecta, Mantodea). Atti della Accademia Roveretana degli Agiati, Serie 8, B, Classe di Scienze Matematiche Fisiche e Naturali 5 (B): 173–197. Archive of the original on December 4, 2014 (English)
Agabiti, B .; Ippolito, S .; Lombardo, F. (2010). The Mediterranean species of the genus Ameles Burmeister, 1838 (Insecta, Mantodea: Amelinae): with a biogeographic and phylogenetic evaluation. Boletín de la SEA Roveretana degli Agiati, Serie 8, B, Classe di Scienze Matematiche Fisiche e Naturali 47: 1–20. (English)