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Phasmatodea

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Stick insects

English

The body and legs of these insects are long and thin. Generally, they are wingless, although some species do have small wings. Their antennae are also long and thin.

Phyllium sp.

English

Description

Leaf insects in this species resemble leaves in colour and shape. These phenomena are referred to as homochromatism (same colour) and homotype (same shape). Males are about 5 cm long, and females are 8 cm long and wider than males. The wings make it easy to distinguish the sexes. The first pair of wings on males is quite small, while the second pair is long and developed for flight. The opposite is true for females: the second pair is smaller and the first pair covers the entire body; they are unable to fly. Females also have shorter antennae, whereas males’ antennae are long and thin.

Peruphasma schultei

English

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.

Heteropteryx dilatata

English

Description

These large, spiny insects with their long antennae are very impressive! The males and females look quite different. The females, which can reach 16 cm in length and weigh up to 50 g, are armed with several spines of different lengths. While the females are generally leaf green, the males are brownish. The males are about 9 cm long and have large purple wings enabling them to fly short distances.

Their name comes from the fact that the females’ brachypterous wings make them look like nymphs.

Theme

We live everywhere

Sub-theme

Tropical forests

Section

Elegant … and fearsome!

Extatosoma tiaratum

English

Description

When it first emerges from the egg, a giant prickly stick insect resembles a large brownish-red ant. The adults are sandy brown with flattened, leaf-shape legs. Males are 10 cm long with slender bodies. Females are 10 to 16 cm long with wider bodies. Males’ wings are more developed than females’. Males have only four spines on their backs, while females have two rows of spines.

Eurycantha calcarata

English

Description

Giant spiny stick insects are large chocolate-brown insects with sturdy, very spiny bodies. The males average 11 cm long, and the females 13 cm. Both sexes have very thick carapaces. The males have strong femurs with large spines. The females are spineless, and have well-developed ovipositors (egg-laying organs).

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