Archive for the 'Insects' Category

The Six-Eyed Violin Spiders

the-six-eyed-violin-spidersViolin Spiders, Loxosceles sp, are normally brown to reddish brown in colour with dark markings on their bodies, and a characteristic violin-shaped marking on the cephalthorax, although this violin shaped marking is not as distinct on our South African species. A second identifying characteristic of the Violin Spider is the presence of only three pairs of eyes, whereas most spiders have four pairs of eyes. Continue Reading »

Scolopendra – Biggest and Most Dangerous of the Centripedes

scolopendra-e28093-biggest-and-most-dangerousThe genus Scolopendra contains the largest and most dangerous of the centipedes. Only small species are present in the colder parts of their range but in the tropics, where they can be quite common, many Scolopendra species reach lengths of well over a foot. Continue Reading »

The Bombardier Beetle – Bug with Complicated Defense Mechanism

the-bombardier-beetle-e28093-bug-with-complicated-defense-mechanismThe tiny bombardier beetle could not possibly have evolved. His defence mechanism is amazingly complicated, and could only have been created with all the parts working together perfectly. From twin ‘exhaust tubes’ at his tail, this beetle fires into the face of his enemies boiling-hot noxious gases with a loud pop. Continue Reading »

The Odd Happy Face Spider

the-odd-happy-face-spiderFound only on the islands of Oahu, Molokai, Maui, and Hawaii, the happy face spider, such as this one guarding its eggs on a leaf in Maui, is known for the unique patterns that decorate its pale abdomen. Continue Reading »

Parasitic Beetles Attack Stingless Bees

parasitic-beetles-attack-stingless-beesIt’s not so much eternal life, more a case of instant death. Parasitic beetles that dare to invade the hive of certain stingless bees end up entombed forever in resin. “They’re stopped in their tracks and they dehydrate and shrivel up like a mummy,” says Mark Greco, an entomologist at the Swiss Bee Research Centre in Bern who discovered the practice in a species of Australian stingless bees, Trigona carbonaria, living in the wild. Continue Reading »

Dobsonflies – The Weird Large-Sized Insects

dobsonflies-e28093-the-weird-large-sized-insectsDobsonflies are species of medium- to large-sized insects in the order Neuroptera, family Corydalidae.

The life cycle of dobsonflies is characterized by a complete metamorphosis, with four developmental stages: egg, larva, pupa, and adult. Adult dobsonflies are usually found near freshwater, especially streams, either resting on vegetation or engaged in an awkward, fluttering flight. Sometimes adult dobsonflies can be abundant at night around lights, even far from water. The immature stages of dobsonflies are aquatic and are usually found beneath stones or other debris in swiftly flowing streams. Continue Reading »

Phobaeticus chain – the Longest Living Insect on the Planet

phobaeticus-chain-e28093-the-longest-living-insect-on-the-planetIt lives high up in the rainforest canopy of Borneo, its eggs have tiny wings so they can glide from one tree to another, and now it has officially entered the record books as the longest insect species alive today. Continue Reading »

Tiny Assassins – Some of the World’s Most Dangerous Spiders

tiny-assassins-e28093-some-of-the-worlds-most-dangerous-spidersThey may be small, but Assassin spiders are among the most dangerous spiders on the planet – if you’re another spider, that is. These tiny arachnids in the Archaeidae family are only about 2 mm (less than 1/8 inch) long, but their bizarre fangs and spider-hunting practices have earned them a reputation as the world’s most grotesque spiders. Continue Reading »

The Mysterious Banana Spider

the-mysterious-banana-spiderThe banana spider is a common name used for two entirely different species of spiders, the nephila clavipes of North America, and the phoneutria of Central and South America, the latter of which can be deadly. Continue Reading »

Luna Moth – Shortly on the Light-Green Insect

luna-moth-e28093-shortly-on-the-light-green-insectThe Luna moth is a light-green moth that has long, curving tails on its hindwings and distinctive eyespots on all four wings. This nocturnal insect is found in deciduous hardwood forests in North America, from Canada to Northern Mexico. Continue Reading »

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