News Analysis

Wonder Of Nature: Stick Insects

As the name implies, it resembles a stick. This, combined with an ability to stay perfectly still for long stretches of time, provides the stick insect with “one of the most efficient natural camouflages on Earth,” as “National Geographic” aptly puts it.

There are many varieties of stick insects. One of the coolest is the giant prickly stick insect, Native to Australia, it boasts the added feature of thorn-like spikes to further blend in to its surroundings. 

Found predominantly in the tropics and subtropics, although several species live in temperate regions. Stick insects thrive in forests and grasslands, where they feed on leaves.

Mainly nocturnal creatures, they spend much of their day motionless, hidden under plants.

Stick insect species, often called walking sticks, range in size from the tiny, half-inch-long Timema cristinae of North America, to the formidable 13-inch-long Phobaeticus kirbyi of Borneo.

This giant measures over 21 inches with its legs outstretched, making it one of the world’s longest insects. Females are normally larger than males.

Many stick insects have wings, some spectacularly beautiful, while others resemble little more than a stump. A number of species have spines and tubercles on their bodies.

Titilayo Kupoliyi

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