To identify if a creature is an insect, the creature must have six legs, thre body parts (the head, the thorax and the abdomen), a pair of antennae, compound eyes and usually but not always at least a pair of wings. They also have amazing abilities. The following are 20 amazing facts about insects.
1. A fear of insects is known as entomophobia; a fear which film director Steven Spielberg has. Animal phobias are quite common and even celebrities have animal phobia.
2. Entomology is the study of insects. And the scientist who studies entomology is called an entomologist.
3. Only female mosquitoes bite. They need the protein in blood to reproduce. Adult male mosquitoes don’t feed on blood. They feed on flower nectar, juices and decaying matter to get the energy to fly.
4. The world’s deadliest and most dangerous creature is not a large animal with claws and sharp teeth but is a small, annoying insect – the mosquitoes. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the diseases spread by the insect’s bites cause over 2 million deaths each year.
5. According to scientists, if you’re blonde, wear blue clothes and just ate bananas, you’re more likely to be bitten by mosquitoes.
6. Mosquitoes don’t travel further than a 1 mile radius of their breeding site.
7. A dragonfly lives for about 4 to 7 weeks.
8. The dragonfly is also known as the Devil’s darning needle.
9. The only creature in the world born with one ear is the praying mantis.
10. The praying mantis can rotate its head to look over its shoulders making it an extremely formidable predator.
11. Butterfly was originally called flutterfly.
12. Butterflies and moths can be found anywhere on earth except on Antarctica.
13. The Female Queen Alexandra butterfly from Papua and New Guinea has wingspans larger than 26cm making this species the largest butterfly in the world.
14. The stick insect, despite its name, has eggs as large as a small nut making it the largest among all insects’ eggs.
15. The brain of the ant is the largest in the animal kingdom in proportion to the size of its body.
16. Ants can carry objects which are 100 times heavier than their own bodies.
17. Spiders have eight legs, eight eyes and it is estimated that we eat eight spiders during our lifetime while asleep.
18. The heaviest insect in the animal kingdom is the Goliath beetle from Africa which weighs over 110gm.
19. A cockroach can continue to live without its head for up to a week.
20. Bees don’t have ears but have five eyes – three small eyes on top of the bees’ head and 2 larger ones in front.