This column, That Nature Show, is about the nature right under your nose: in our backyards, playgrounds and parks! Stop and look around, you’ll be amazed at what surrounds you.
On exhibit at the National Aquarium is the world’s most outlandish rock star. The mantis shrimp. Think colorful pop Katy Perry meets the incredible range of Freddie Mercury, but with a Hulksmashing claw fast as a bullet (according to Wikipedia, “some larger species of mantis shrimp are capable of breaking through aquarium glass with a single strike from this weapon” and vision so much better than ours that RadioLab compared it to a full chorus.
Move waaay over foxes or “Put a bird on it” from Portlandia, the mantis is having a moment. I predict hipster mantis shrimp t-shirts this summer. You might even find me rocking one underneath a pastel colored crop top jacket, that — horrifyingly for anyone who remembers the 80s — are back in again. WWTMSD? (What would the mantis shrimp do?)