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.

A specimen of the stick insect Phobaeticus chani measures 56.6cm (22.3in) long with its legs fully stretched, which is more than a centimetre longer than the previous title holder, another stick insect called P. serratipes found in Malaysia.

Even without its long legs, P. chani has the longest body in the insect world, measuring 35.7cm, which is 2.9cm longer than the previous record holder, yet another stick insect from Borneo called P. kirbyi.

The specimen will go on display in the Creepy Crawlies gallery at the Natural History Museum in London. George Beccaloni, the museum’s curator of stick insects, said: “We’ve known about both the previous record holders for over 100 years, so it’s extraordinary an even bigger species has only just been discovered.

“It’s a sad thought that many other spectacular insect species are disappearing as their habitats are destroyed, before we have been able to find and name them.

“It’s amazing that such big things are still out there and makes you wonder what else there might be.” — Inspired by