Praying Mantis Egg Mass on Apple Twig

Q: I found this on an apple branch in December. A friend says it might be an apple-eating Asian devil worm. Should I remove it?

A: Lucky you! You have found a praying mantis egg mass. It poses no threat to the apple tree.

If things go as they should, one warm spring day you’ll see hundreds of little praying mantises crawling on nearby tree limbs busily eating each other.

Do the best you can to move them to other points in your landscape so they can begin eating insects, like aphids and mealybugs, etc., that might be harmful to your plants.