15 Weirdest Insects on Earth

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From bugs shaped like the thorns around them, to caterpillars that could camouflage themselves in a mountain of toupees, we count 15 strange and bizarre insects living all over our world

15 – Puss Moth Caterpillar

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  • This is a medium sized species of moth found across Europe and parts of North Africa
  • The caterpillar form takes on a green colour with a spike protruding from the back of its colourful face, and when threatened it strikes up a defensive pose then tends to shoot a puss-like formic acid at its attacker
  • Despite its almost comical big-mouth with lipstick defensive face, animals tend to take the message and back off before getting acid squirted all over their eye sockets

14 – Extatosoma Tiaratum

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  • Or more commonly known as the Giant Prickly Stick Insect, the largest known species coming in at lengths of 8 inches covered in hard, rippling spikes doubling as camouflage and defensive armour
  • Usually this stick insect will blend in with the environment to avoid trouble, but when confronted it will double down like a scorpion and release a chemical to scare off would-be predators
  • For some bizarre reason, that chemical smells like peanut butter – something to think about next time you prepare yourself a little sandwich

13 – Snake Caterpillar

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  • Also known as the Elephant Hawk-moth, a species found all throughout Ireland and Britain
  • This moth larva is about 3 inches long and when startled, retreat its trunk back into the body to form this curious snake shape
  • Since birds tend to go after caterpillars often, but shy away from snakes, the birds are fooled by this display – whether because of its shape or the sudden transformation is unclear

12 – Thorn Bug

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  • These are a group of insects related to cicadas and leafhoppers, with about 3,200 species seen to date on every continent except Antarctica
  • Their bodies resemble thorns, apparently to aid camouflage, but in some other species it grows into more a of a horn with some bizarre and hard-to-describe shapes also found
  • These also have distant relations to gecko because of the small vibrations they create through their abdomen

11 – Pipevine Swallowtail Caterpillar

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  • When these things are young, they turn blood-red slowly becoming black with orange horns
  • It’s because the body breaks down cell by cell only to be rebuilt from scratch as a butterfly or moth – to go from an ugly little beady, gooey thing into a fantastic winged creature
  • If only humans could shed their own skin and climb out into some amazing new form with, like, built in jetpacks and lazer eyes – I’d like that

10 – Brazilian Treehopper

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  • This is another species of treehopper related to the thorn bug, a hermit-style insect with helicopter headgear
  • You might think it’s simply a sexual trait designed to appeal to the opposite gender, or eyeballs for a full 360 view, but no, it’s believed this crazy headpiece is designed to creep out predators
  • However, it does hold many bristles, and if they turn out to be sensory bristles then it might be used for some unknown tactile function, like sending out radio waves to pick up what toupees are in right now

9 – Donald Trump Caterpillar

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  • Speaking of toupees, we find this flannel moth caterpillar in the rainforests of Peru
  • They might look furry and perfect to wear on your balding head – but don’t be fooled, that “fur” is made up for tons of venomous spines that cause painful swelling for days
  • I’m still waiting to hear about the caterpillar that looks like a pile of dog turd, but from what I can tell, that one hasn’t been found yet
  • If we ever find intelligent life somewhere out in the universe, I hope it neither looks like turd nor toupee

8 – Orchid Mantis

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  • This is a variety of flower mantis found primarily in Indonesia and parts of Malaysia – it’s part of a larger family of flower mantises
  • This one camouflages to match orchids, even mimicking parts of the flower like blowing about in the wind with its four walking legs shaped like petals
  • The females of the species are double the size of males, and both hunt flying insects by sitting around and waiting for them to fly by

7 – Atlas Moth

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  • This guy is known widely as the largest species of moth in the world, maroon coloured with triangular windows on both wings
  • They’re highly valued in South East Asia for the silks used in their cocoons, then weaved into materials for a purse sold in Taiwan
  • They’re sometimes nicknamed the cobra moth simply because they’re found in those asian regions, and not because it’ll clamp down on your face and squirt venom through your cheek flesh – no, these are relatively friendly

6 – Wattle Cup Caterpillar

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  • Another Australian abomination, using aesthetic loveliness and covering it in vicious spikes
  • You’ll only find these in the northern regions of down under, usually waiting innocently in your boots until, whoops, it unleashes not only the spikes, but a potent sting three times more painful than from any wasp
  • Safe to say you don’t want to invite these things around your place for a quiet dinner and movie, unless being in horrible pain happens to be your thing

5 – Damselfly

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  • This is the common name for any insect with an elongated body, large ungodly eyes widely seperated and two pairs of strong transparent wings
  • We’re usually interested in these for their bizarre appearance, their colours and unique mating behaviours
  • There’s also a chance you’ll get trapped in a body swap machine with one of these and end up with two horrifying eye globes attached to your face, but that IS pretty uncommon

4 – Bert Bug

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  • It was while photographer Darlyne Murawski was on an assignment in the Khao Chong Forest Reserve of southern Thailand that she came across this ridiculous giant shield bug
  • At first she felt it looked like Elvis Presley with its nose, mouth eyes and signature hairdo – but others believe it to more closely resemble Bert from Sesame Street
  • The photo was so shocking that she immediately went home and listened to every Elvis track, asking forgiveness from her new insect overlord

3 – Lymantrid Moth

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  • This is widespread in Danish beech forests, a species with one generation in Denmark, with grey moths flying during June
  • The females can lay almost 400 eggs, normally near where it emerged from its pupae state – and it’s very hairy, easily transported with the wind to relocate with ease
  • The pupation process takes place among leaves on the ground, where it spins a silken cocoon

2 – Giant Camel Spider

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  • The only reason we know about these is because US infantry from the Persian and Iraq wars brought back photos of these little bastards sneaking into sleeping bags to bite soldiers
  • Those native to Iraq aren’t poisonous, but they still hurt – traditionally it uses its face claws to catch prey fast as lightning, getting up to speeds of 10 miles per hour
  • Even the official name Arachnid Solifugae means “flee from the sun”, and for good reason

1 – Giant Water Bug

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  • An insect that might set off one of your hidden phobias – a type of large beetle that gets around as a fierce predator stalking, hunting and feeding on fish and amphibians
  • Once they locate their prey, they strike and inject them with a powerful digestive saliva, to which they suck out the liquefied remains
  • Those protrusions on their back are eggs, carried until they all hatch on the male’s back while the females job is to find more males and mate with them
  • Such is life

 

 

 

 

LINKS
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http://www.3rank.com/

http://www.oddee.com/

http://listverse.com/

http://www.sickchirpse.com/

http://thefw.com/

http://www.oddee.com/

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