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The Wily Walkingstick

11-19-2015 Bug Database

The Wily Walkingstick The walkingstick is one of the most amazing and yet common insects in the world. They are so talented at mimicry that most people never notice them amidst the rest of the twigs in trees. There are around 3,000 species of walkingsticks, some growing as long as 22 inches. These bugs have a few amazing accomplishments to brag about. When walkingsticks mate their embrace can last for days. Pretty impressive, right? Well, this is mostly because the male doesn't leave the female until her egg is fertilized. If he did, other males would simply walk right in and take his place, replacing his sperm with theirs. So, they have to have pretty good stamina just to protect their genetic stock. The females are pretty clever themselves. When they lay their eggs, they simply discard them among dead leaves. But, in a smart move they attach an appendage to their eggs that trick ants into taking them back to their nests where the eggs can safely hatch. After being guarded by the ants, the hatchling eventually makes its way up into the trees to join other walkingsticks in their voracious consuming of leaves. What do you think of these deceptively twig-looking bugs?