In the movie, Kong: Skull Island, there is a species called the Spore Mantis.
When stationary, the Spore Mantis looks like a giant, dead log. When active, it looks like a giant insect - a giant, yet slow mantis. As said, the exoskeleton or epidermis resembles wood, however, under this deceptive layer lies a parasitic slug with powerful mandibles. This might suggest two things:
- that the slug itself might help provide extra defensive capabilities, and
- that the exoskeleton is thick enough to be hollowed out without causing any harm or permanent tissue damage.
The name “Spore Mantis” suggests that the species has evolved to reproduce using spores. When stationary, it’ll grow small rootlets from its feet, meaning that its exoskeleton is essentially capable of growing leaves or plants, which also furthers the fact that it’s capable of going through photosynthesis. When not stationary, it can walk around slowly searching for food but since it’s slow, it usually just stays stationary until a creature walks by - like most praying mantises.
Finally, a Spore Mantis is generally placid. In contrast, a provoked one is dangerous in that there will sometimes be other creatures around, atop, or actually living on it.
Could such a species ever feasibly exist?