Insects can be distinguished from other small animals by their six legs, three body parts (head, thorax and abdomen), antennae, compound eye, and wings (usually, but not always). Furthermore, they have some absolutely amazing abilities. Grasshoppers can jump 40 times the length of their body; ants can carry objects that weight 100 times the weight of their own body. Insects live everywhere: forests, jungles, grasslands, deserts, swamps, ponds, and streams – even inside the bodies of other animals! By current estimates there may be as many as 10 million different kinds. The most common groups of insects are the beetles, butterflies and moths, ants, bees and wasps, flies, grasshoppers and crickets, and true bugs.
Did You Know these facts about insects & bugs ?
Living scorpions reflect ultraviolet light and can glow with an eerie greenish colour when exposed to UV light, no matter what colour they appear under normal lighting conditions.
The atlas moth, one of the largest silk moths, can be mistaken for a medium-sized bat when flying.
The female yellow jacket wasp lays both fertilized and unfertilized eggs. Female workers develop from the fertilized egg and male drones develop from the unfertilized egg.
Butterflies and moths are found on all land masses except Antarctica.
There are between 10 million and 30 million species of insects in the world, of which only one million are known to science.
Praying mantids are among the few insects which can rotate their heads so they can literally look over their shoulders, making them extremely effective predators.
The metallic-coloured wing covers of some beetles are used for jewelry.
Tarantual wasps paralyze tarantulas and lay a single egg on the still living spider; when the egg hatches, the wasp larva has fresh food.
Female Queen Alexandra butterflies, from Papua and New Guinea, are the largest in the world, some with wingspans larger than 26 cm.
There are more than 300,000 species of beetles, making them the largest order of insects in the world.
There are about 20,000 different insect species in Alberta, most of them less than 3 mm long.
The Jungle Nymph Stick is one of the heaviest insects. In Malaysia they are often kept by people who feed them guava leaves and use the droppings to make tea.
The eggs of walking stick insects are among the largest in the insect world. Some eggs are more than eight millimetres long.
Did you know ….?
…… flies can “taste” with their feet?
……entomologists are estimating that there are between 5 million and 150 million species of insects on earth?
……the fastest known insect is a dragon fly that has been clocked at 58 kilometres an hour?
……the longest insect is a walking stick that can reach a length of 33 centimetres?
……the heaviest insect in the world is the Goliath beetle from Africa? A big male can weigh up to 100 grams.
……cockroach can live up to nine days without its head?
……a leaf-cutter ant queen mates only once – just before establishing a new colony? She can then keep the sperm viable for up to 15 years and produce as many as 300 million offspring.
……of the 35,000 species of spiders, only 27 species are known to have caused human fatalities?
a flea can jump 130 times its own height?
……some mosquitoes can beat their wings 600 times a second? A midge fly holds the record, with a wing beat of 1046 times a second.
……the bite from a black widow spider is not automatically fatal? In fact, less than 1% of all people bitten by this spider run the risk of dying, and most of them are saved with the use of antivenin?
……butterflies get their name from the yellow brimstone butterfly of Europe that is first seen in the early spring or “butter” season?
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