CONTENTS Interesting facts about different orders of insects • Coleoptera: (Beetles; lady bird, goliath, hercules, dung, tiger, firefly ) • Hemiptera: (Bugs; Assassin bug ) • Homoptera: (Cicadas) • Lepidoptera: (Butterfly, Moths ) • Hymenoptera: (Wasps, Ants, Bees) • Isoptera: (termites) • Mantodea: (Praying mantis ) • Blattodea: (Cockroach ) • Orthoptera: (Grasshopper, Cricket ) • Diptera: (House fly, Bot fly, Mosquito ) • Odonata: (Dragonfly ) • Phasmatodea: (Jungle nymph stick, walking stick ) • Siphonaptera: (Flea ) • Strepsiptera: (Twisted wing parasite )
Ladybug: (Coccinellidae) Beetles • Beetles taste like apples(40) • The metallic-colored wing covers of some beetles are used for jewelry.(2) Not bugs. The Ladybird Beetle.(6) Eats bad insects called aphids. (1) They may even produce a foul-smelling odor from a fluid from joints in their legs.(27)
When threatened, ladybugs "play dead.” (27) They are named after the Virgin Mary. 'Our Lady', who wore a red cloak in old paintings. The 7 spots are supposed to remind us of the 7 joys and the 7 sorrows.(27) In many countries, ladybugs are considered to be good luck.(27) During hibernation, ladybugs feed on their stored fat.
Goliath beetle: (Scarabaeidae) Hercules beetle: (Scarabaeidae) • Strongest animal on earth The biggestand the heaviest bug in the world. which can weigh up to 3.5 ounces and be 4.5 inches long, A big male can weigh up to 100 grams.(2) Goliath beetles can be kept aspets, just feed them dog food.(38)
Dung Beetles: (Scarabaeidae) The female lays a single egg into each ball of dung and then covers the nest with more dung and soil.(16) In ancient Egypt it was the most important religious symbol. Without dung beetles, the earth would be piled high with manure. It can use polarized moonlight at night to navigate the way as it rolls a dung ball to a safe spot away from the pile.
With a moon, the beetles rolled their dung balls away in a straight line. This is the most efficient path. Without a moon, the beetles could not roll the ball in a straight line. (16)
Tiger beetle: (Carabidae) • If they chase prey at high speeds, they'll go blind. • Tiger beetles stop-and-go in their pursuit of prey. • "If the tiger beetles move too quickly, they don't gather enough photons to form an image of their prey,”. (32) Voracious predatory sun-loving insects. (32) These have a speed of 25 miles per hour in short bursts making them the fastest land insects in the world
Firefly: (Lampyridae) Fireflies are also called Lightning Bugs. (24) Fireflies are soft bodied beetles On the underside of the abdomen it have special light organs that glows in luminous flashes. Fireflies Use Aggressive Mimicry Recent evidence also suggests that these female mimics are not only acquiring food but also defensive chemicals from their prey, which they themselves do not produce in large quantities. (24)
The taillight contains two rare chemicals, 1. Luciferin, a heat resistant substrate, is the source of light; Luciferase, an enzyme, Oxygen is the fuel. A body chemical, ATP converts to energy and causes the Luciferin-luciferase mixture to light up. As all living cells contain ATP in a rather constant concentration, injection of the firefly's chemicals quickly detects energy problems in human cells.
The firefly technique is used to study heart disease, muscular dystrophy, urology, antibiotic testing, waste water treatment, environmental protection and diagnosis of hypothermia in swine. Special electronic detectors, using firefly chemicals, have been placed in spacecrafts to look for earth-life forms in outer space. (25)
Assassin bug: (Reduviidae) • They get their name because of the speed that they have to grab and poison their prey. • The saliva of the assassin bug starts to work almost immediately. Cockroaches die in only 3 or 4 seconds. • Assassin bugs also transmit a parasite to man that causes Chagas disease. • Assassin bugs, known as "kissing bugs,“ • Kissing bugs can be the source of nocturnal dermatologic woundsin the mid to southern latitudes in the United States. (8)
CICADA • The male cicada makes the loudest soundin the insect world • After the adults have mated both will die. • "Music boxes" at the base of the abdomen have no cover and its eyes and the principal veins of the wings are red. • The sudden appearance of the adults in large numbers has been supposed to foretell war.(54) Cicadas are also called harvest flies or locusts(54) Actually they are not locusts(56)
Butterflies: They get their name from the yellow brimstone butterfly of Europe First seen in the early spring or "butter" season Taste sensors are located below their feet. The color is produced prism-like by light reflected by their transparent wing scales. A butterfly has to have a body temperature greater than 86 degrees to be able to fly. A butterfly can see the colors red, green, and yellow.(5)
Queen Alexandra butterflies:(Papilionidae) • The largest butterfly is the Queen Alexandra's birdwing butterfly from Papua New Guinea. • The wingspan of the butterfly can reach to be almost one foot or larger than 26 cm. (5)
Monarch butterfly: (Nymphalidae) The fastest flying butterfly which has been clocked with a speed as high as 17 miles/hr. (5) During migration they mate and lay eggs along the way and at their landing place. (1) Lay eggs on the milkweed. The larvae eat the milkweed. Monarch caterpillars shed their skin four times before they become a chrysalis.(4)
Night butterflies: • It has ears on their wings to avoid bats.(5) Atlas Moth: (Saturniidae) • The atlas moth one of the largest silk moths, can be mistaken for a medium-sized batwhen flying.(2) Sphinx Moths: (Sphingidae) • It has impressive speed and sometimes seem almost birdlike(37)
Wasp: • Wasps taste like pine nuts. (40) Tarantula wasps: ( Pompilidae) • It paralyzes tarantulas and lay a single egg on the still living spider; when the egg hatches, the wasp larva has fresh food. • Tarantula has eight eyes but it can not tell light from dark and it is also deaf. (21)
Ants Ants can carry objects that weight 100 times the weight of their own body.(2) Colony of 40,000 ants has collectively the same size brain as a human. Ant brains are largest amongst insects. An ant's brain may have the same processing power as a Macintosh II computer. Some ants sleep seven hours a day. The abdomen of the ant contains two stomachs. The sense of smell of an ant is just as good as a dog's is.(18)
Some birds put ants in their feathers because the ants squirt formic acid which gets rid of the parasites. The ant, when intoxicated, will always fall over to its right side.(41) Ants really produce antifreeze agents(49) One kind of ant is like a dairy farmer. He keeps little "cows" called aphids. In the winter, these ants carry aphids into their nests and care for them. In the spring, the aphids are placed on plants, where they feed.
When ants rub the bodies of the aphids a sweet liquid comes out, which the ants drink.(50) When they are not working, they spend much of their tine making themselves neat. They cannot bear anything dead around. If an insect dies near their hone, a large number of them gather together to push the body out of the way.(51)
Army ants: (formicidae) • Animals the size of horses being overwhelmed and shredded by them.(7) Slave-maker ant: (formicidae) • The Slave-Maker Ant steals the pupae of other ants. When these new ants hatch, they work as slaves within the colony.
Carpenter ant: (formicidae) In the Mediterranean, ants are used by surgeons to close incisions; they are made to bite together an open wound, and then their heads are severed from their bodies. Their jaws will remain locked until the incision heals.(43) These ants are known as carpenter ants because they house their colonies in galleries they excavate in wood. Carpenter ants do not eat the wood.(4)
Tree ants: (formicidae) They build the traps from tree fibers reinforced with fungus. When an unsuspecting insect encounters the trap, the ants emerge from hiding underneath and pull the prey’s legs to immobilize them. Then they dismember the victim and carry the parts off to the colony.(38)
HoneyBees (Apidae) • Bees possess five eyes. • Honeybees can perceive movements that are separated by 1/300th of a second. Humans can only sense movements separated by 1/50th of a second. Were a bee to enter a cinema, it would be able to differentiate each individual movie frame being projected. • Bees cannot recognize the color red. • Honeybees are the only insects that produce food for humans. • About 8 pounds of honey is eaten by bees to produce 1 pound of bee wax.
The average hive temperature is 93.5 degrees. • One single bee usually visits between 50-1000 flowers a day • Honeybees have hair on their eyes. • The brain of the honeybee is superior to the supercomputer computer by several orders of magnitude. The supercomputer can compute at the rate of one billion computations per second. The honeybee's brain can compute one billion computations in 1/1000 of a second.(47)
In the course of her lifetime, a worker bee will produce1/12th of a teaspoon of honey. • To produce 2 pounds of honey, bees travel a distance equal to 4 times around the earth.(9) • The energy in one ounce of honey would provide one bee with enough energy to fly around the world.(9)
Africanized honey bee: (Apidae) • The most dangerousbee of all. • The reason for this is that when these bees attack, they attack in swarms. • Their venom is not any deadlier than other bees, but, since they attack in swarms, more stings are received. • Africanized Honey Bees (killer bees) will pursue an enemy 1/4 mile or more.(9,39)
Termites Lots of people eat termites, winged termites are verynutritious,but when lightly fried, reasonably tasty. Termites are important in the diets of many ants, lizards, birds, and are also eaten by lions and gorillas(44) Wood eating termites, cannot digest cellulose! So they have flagellates in their intestine. These tiny flagellates make enzymes that break down the cellulose of wood and also supply protein. They digest the wood for the termite.(52)
PRAYING MANTIS (Mantids/ Mantodea)
Praying mantis: The female is green and the male is brown. The female mantis will consume the male after they mate. Some farmers use praying mantis instead of chemicals to control pests in their crops. (1) 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 mantids sheds its skin twelve times before it is full grown.(48)
COCHROACH • Cockroaches could be used to place surveillance devices in military installations (11) • Scientists have actually performed brain surgery on cockroaches.(19) • A cockroach can change directions up to 25 times in a second. • If a cockroach breaks a leg it can grow another one. • The earliest fossil cockroach is about 280 million years old – 80 million years older than the first dinosaurs!
Cockroach can live up to nine days without its head • German cockroaches can survive for up to one month without food and two weeks without water. (19) • Some female cockroaches mate once and are pregnant for the rest of their lives (bummer). (12) • Cockroaches can run up to three miles in an hour.(13) • The world's largest roach (which lives in South America) is six inches long with a one-foot wingspan. (12)
Madagascar hissing cockroach:(Blaberidae) • large, wingless cockroach from Madagascar. (11) • Hissing plays an important role during male-male inter- actions. • It is one of the few insects who give birth to live young, rather than laying eggs • Sailors on infested ships have been known to wear gloves on their hands while asleep to keep the roaches from gnawing off their fingernails.(45)
Cockroaches and “The Bomb” • During a nuclear war “we die but they live” Because cockroaches can tolerate a much higher dose of rems. The lethal dose for the German cockroach it is between 90,000 and 105,000 rems. • In truth the amount of radiation that cockroaches can withstand is equivalent to that of a thermonuclear explosion.
Grasshopper • A more attractive feature of some grasshoppers is their ability to sing. It's the males that sing. (26) • Grasshoppers can jump 40 times the length of their body.(2) • They can jump on earth in proportion to their size.(34) • Short horned grasshoppers have ears in the sides of the abdomen. Long-horned grasshoppers have ears in the knee-joints of their front legs. (26) • Grasshoppers can draw blood with a kick.(33)
Cricket • Crickets have ears in the knee-joints of their front legs. (26) • chirping noise is produced by rubbing its forewings together. • Thehigher the air temperaturethe greater number of chirps it generates per minutes.(17) • Crickets aregood temperature reader.(26) • Some crickets areintelligent, they make a conical-shaped hole that help amplify the sound of their chirps allowing it to be heard as far as 2,000 feet away.
Locusts(Orthoptera) Locusts can eat their own weight in food in a day.(4)
FLIES ( Diptera)