Mantasphids are a species of sapient, hive-based coprophagous insectoids. Their hives are populated by swarms of workers which look like dog-sized wasps with compound eyes, black skin and a green bioluminescent area in their abdomen as well as their eyes. The Mantasphid queen differs radically, being dozens of times larger than a Human being, with a more elongated body with several sets of jointed limbs and antennae. She is also the only Mantasphid known to be able to speak.

In the 40th century, a colony of Mantasphids invaded the Human colony world of Myarr for its rich resource of dung (produced by livestock) and attacked the Human settlers, leading to a brief war between the two species. Despite a xenophobic attitude towards "fleshy bipeds", the Mantasphids later accepted the Doctor's proposed idea that peace may be created if the Mantasphids offer their naturally produced bioluminescence as a source of energy for the Human cities in exchange for the dung. To have the Mantasphid's redemption accepted, the Doctor contacted Myarr authorities and pretended to be an evil pirate by the name of "Dr. Vile" who has been controlling the insectoids.

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