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Peruphasma schultei

  • Live collection
Credit: Insectarium de Montréal, Laurent Desaulniers

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Description

These stick insects have velvety matte black bodies, with yellow eyes, red mouthparts and antennae marked with white. Their vestigial wings are red. The females measure 5 to 7 cm and are much sturdier than the males, which are 4 to 5 cm long.

Theme

We live everywhere

Sub-theme

Tropical forests

Section

The stick insect kingdom

Country of origin

Peru
French name
Phasme péruvien de Schulte
Scientific name
Peruphasma schultei
English name
Golden eyed stick Insect
Class
Insecta
Order
Phasmatodea
Family
Pseudophasmatidae
Living environment

Diet

In the wild, they feed only on pepper trees of the genus Schinus.

Habitat

They live at high altitudes (1,200 to 1,800 m) on low-growing plants and shrubs.

Geographic distribution

This species is found only in a small 5-hectare nature reserve in northern Peru.

Ecological role

They are phytophagous (plant-eating) insects that help maintain the balance of nature in their habitat.

Special behaviour

When they feel threatened, they flutter their bright red vestigial wings.

They can also secrete a strong-smelling irritating liquid when they are handled.

Like many other stick insects, they avoid light. They are active at dusk and at night.

Interesting facts

Status

Their known distribution is extremely limited.

Interesting facts and curiosities

The first specimens were discovered in 2002 by Rainer Schulte, a German biologist working in Peru. The species was named in his honour.

At the Insectarium

In captivity they are fed privet.

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