’Giant praying mantis.’
Jean Henri Fabre was a ethologist from the second half of the 19th century who liked to study the behaviour of insects. Only when he reached the age of fifty six was he able to realize his life long dream. He bought an old Provençal farm in Sérignan-du-Comtat, surrounded by wild sun-scourged land that was ideal for studying insects. Nowadays his garden, partly cultured, party left wild, is open for visitors. As is his house and study with the famous tiny desk he loved to work at. But what really catches the eye is the enormous praying mantis (Mantis religiosa) on the roundabout where visitors have to take the turn for the museum (sculpture by Jean-Pierre Maurice, ± 2009). Photo Paul Smit.