Mantidflies are in the family Mantispidae. This fascinating group of creatures aren’t actually flies at all – they are close relatives of lacewings. Their enlarged front legs are used to capture small insects for consumption, and their elongated prothroax makes them look a bit giraffe-like. This was the first mantidfly I’ve ever found in my garden, and I was completely fascinated by it. Mantidflies are largely nocturnal predators. The larvae of the subfamily to which this species of mantidfly likely belongs (Mantispinae) feed exclusively on spider eggs. You can’t get more beneficial than that in my book!