Dear reader, I don't know what kind of antics Pip is pulling, but he has yet to molt. Mind you, I'm not terribly familiar with the Tenodera sinensis, but I'm thinking two weeks and running is a long time for any young mantis not to extricate itself from its girdle of old skin.
Last night I moved Kingsley into a bigger habitat (note to prospective mantis keepers: your mantis should have at least four inches from where it hangs on its perch to the bottom of the habitat in order to have sufficient room to molt) and then, upon further consideration, moved Pip into Kingsley's old digs. I've been keeping Pip in a tiny house habitat because I worried he was too small and disadvantaged by his missing arm to successfully hunt...but now I'm beginning to wonder if such close quarters might impede a molt.
Who knows? I wish he'd open up and tell me his issues. I mean, I get it, Pip: life is not for the faint of heart. Who signed you up for this deal, anyway? Who signed you up for being hatched out of some gigantic, foamy egg with a zillion other siblings who'd just as soon eat you as walk you to the bus stop, who decreed you should have the singular misfortune of losing your left arm, and who dreamed up the treacherous notion that in order to flourish, you must break out of your rapidly hardening body skin at least seven times over in a process so vulnerable it's a miracle anyone survives??!
(a moment of silence, for effect...)
I mean, what's it going to be, Pip, darling? This thing is real. It's happening. You have to get your head in the game, dear boy. It's go time.
I'm not above bribery, by the way. How else do you think I persuaded Caroline to get her immunizations? Do you like Legos, Pip? Or do your tastes run more to cash, cars, and small islands?
Either way, you can't make this stuff up. Life can be crazy. It can be rough. I'm not going to take that away from you, Pip.
But it can be so good, too.
The choice is yours, dear fellow, and I respect that. But if only you knew how badly I wanted you to make a go of it...I think it would give you pause to consider.