Awesome Insects

Life in a Different Light

Life in a Different Light

Martin Kristiansen of My Microscopic World used a polarized light source, a lab microscope, and an iPhone to capture these incredibly detailed, colorful, and otherworldly images of insect larvae, isopods, and tiny crustaceans. Check out more amazing close-up images on his Instagram feed.

Nite Ize Buglit Micro Flashlight

Nite Ize Buglit Micro Flashlight
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Hang this cute critter on your keyring or backpack, and you’ll always be ready to bug out. The BugLit micro flashlight is a handy task light with a carabiner and bendy legs to point the light where you need it. The rechargeable light has four modes and is bright enough to illuminate up to 50 feet.

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Moths in Ultra Slow-Motion

Moths in Ultra Slow-Motion

In real-time and without a good macro lens, it’s hard to appreciate just how awesome insects can be. In this video from Ant Lab, we get a wonderful close-up look at seven species of moths for a look at their beautiful wing patterns and colors, captured at 6000 frames per second. Isn’t nature amazing?

Small Worlds Macro Photography

Small Worlds Macro Photography

Photographer Jens Heidler of Another Perspective offers a series of crisp close-up stills and video footage of animals and insects, revealing incredible details not visible to the naked eye. Check out his video on flash diffusers for some tips on capturing great macro images.

True Facts About Ticks

True Facts About Ticks

We can think of few nastier pests than ticks. They spread disease, make you and your pets itch like mad, are difficult to remove, and are completely gross looking under a magnifying lens. Naturally, Zefrank thought they’d be a good subject for their tongue-in-cheek nature show. We’re itchy just from watching this.

The Bizarre Physics of Fire Ants

The Bizarre Physics of Fire Ants

You never want to get too close to a mound of fire ants. But from the comfortable distance of your browser, they’re neat little buggers. Vox explores some of the fascinating ways in which colonies stick together to form structures, and how they can act as both a solid or fluid.

True Facts: Trap Jaw Ants

True Facts: Trap Jaw Ants

With the help of footage from researchers, ZeFrank provides his lighthearted insights on the Odontomachus, a genus of ants with jaws that can open 180-degrees, then shut like a bear trap. In addition to grabbing prey, they can use their mandibles to eject unwanted intruders or extract themselves quickly from a threat.

Ranger Ready Insect Spray

Ranger Ready Insect Spray
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Don’t let mosquitoes and ticks ruin your outdoor adventures. Ranger Ready’s Picaridin-based insect repellents keep bugs at bay for up to 12 hours, and without neurotoxins like DEET, so they’re safe on skin. They come in three pleasant scents as well as unscented. They also make a long-wearing Permethrin clothing spray.

How Spiders Fly

How Spiders Fly

Despite their lack of wings, spiders can actually take flight. This video from the University of Bristol video explains a process called ballooning, in which spiders take advantage of static electrical charges and wind currents to carry silk – and their bodies – through the air.

Making a Hornet from Hardware

Making a Hornet from Hardware

Watch as a pile of ordinary brass nuts and bolts is transformed into a shiny sculpture of an insect by artist Ross the Random. We weren’t quite sure where he was going at first with the wing piece, but the finished work turned out to be quite amazing.

Lifelike Balloon Animals

Lifelike Balloon Animals

Masayoshi Matsumoto is no birthday party balloon artist. Nope, his specialty is creating complex balloon animals that belong in an art gallery. His inflatable sculptures require many more bends and twists than typical balloon art, resulting in greater detail and realism. Check out his YouTube channel for tutorials.

True Facts: Deception in the Rainforest

True Facts: Deception in the Rainforest

Among the awesome creatures in the rainforests are animals and insects that can camouflage into their surroundings, along with ones designed to scare off predators. Zefrank talks about these amazing evolutionary traits, accompanied by incredible imagery by photographers David Weiller and Thomas Marent.

Serenity Flying Ornithopter

Serenity Flying Ornithopter

This crazy-looking flying machine resembles some kind of angry dragonfly as it takes to the skies. Instead of engines, the remote-controlled Serenity Ornithopter flies by rapidly flapping multiple sets of wings. The back half of the video is entirely in Russian, but it provides a brief up-close look at the unusual aircraft.

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Insects Take Flight in Slow-Motion

Insects Take Flight in Slow-Motion

Dr. Adrian Smith of Ant Lab is the man you want to see if you’ve got a question about bugs. Among his many buggy pursuits is capturing slow-motion footage of insects as they take flight. In this video, you’ll enjoy a variety of bugs lifting off, many of which are less graceful than you’d think.

True Facts: Army Ant Riders

True Facts: Army Ant Riders

ZeFrank takes a few minutes to explain the fascinating habits of Eciton army ants, from the massive community structures they build using their bodies, to their coordinated swarms, to their killer instincts and protein-rich dietary habits. You’ll also meet some unique insects that like to hitch rides on the ants.

Giant Metal Scorpion

Giant Metal Scorpion
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The scorpions we encounter here in the U.S. are relatively small, but this oversize metal creature measures 8.25″ long. This awesomely creepy creation is made by Thailand artists Kreatworks using recycled automotive and machine parts. Also, it turns out that there are real scorpions that are almost the same size in South Africa.

Robot Hummingbird Films Butterflies

Robot Hummingbird Films Butterflies

Nature photographers John Downer Productions flew a realistic, robotic hummingbird deep into a forest packed with hundreds of millions of monarch butterflies. The drone captured amazing footage of the swarm as they awoke from their long winter’s nap in Mexico. From the BBC Series Spy in the Wild.

Kabuto Sumo Board Game

Kabuto Sumo Board Game

The guys behind BoardGameTables.com have created a fun, family-friendly game that anyone can play in about 15 minutes. In Kabuto Sumo, players take on the role of some badass beetles, and attempt to push their opponents out of the ring. Each wrestler disc has a unique shape and a special power that affects their moves.

Hornet Flight Slo-mo

Hornet Flight Slo-mo

Nature photographer Lothar Lenz captured this incredible macro slow-motion video of hornets in motion, as they fly around, sip water, and live their lives near his home in the Eifel region of Germany. The crystal clear sounds of the buzzing insects are especially immersive with headphones on.

Human vs. Giant Spider Web

Human vs. Giant Spider Web

Walking into a spider web can be a sticky and annoying situation for both humans and spiders. But what would happen if spiders and their webs were much larger? Could you extract yourself before you get wrapped up like a giant fly? What If ponders this horrifying situation in a video that’s definitely not for arachnophobes.

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Ant Colony Time-lapse

Ant Colony Time-lapse

Chip Channel spends most of his time restoring rusty old toys. He also has an ant farm. Watch as these industrious little harvester ants start out with a clean slate of sand, and proceed to build out a complex maze of tunnels for their colony to call home. Everything you see here happened in 24 hours.

Insect Takeoffs

Insect Takeoffs

Despite their size, insects feature some incredibly sophisticated organic engineering. Using high-speed macro photography, Ant Lab shows off the way that eight different types of bugs take to the air. That plume moth looks a little drunk when it takes off.

The Mighty Weaver Ant

The Mighty Weaver Ant

Kurzgesagt introduces us to the oecophylla weaver ant. These long-legged insects dwell in tropical jungles, building incredible colonies that spread upwards and sideways between trees. They’re not only incredibly industrious, they’re fierce warriors and defenders of their kingdoms.

Tortoise Beetle Take-off

Tortoise Beetle Take-off

Before his passing in 2019, scientist and photographer Andreas Kay captured some amazing imagery of the diverse lifeforms in Ecuador. We especially enjoyed this slow motion, macro footage of a tortoise beetle as it opens its wings and lifts off. He also rigged up a spherical treadmill to shoot footage of insects as they walk.

Hoppers in Slow-Motion

Hoppers in Slow-Motion

After introducing us to the charming little globular springtail, biologist Dr. Adrian Smith AntLab wanted to capture slow-motion footage of other jumping insects. In this fascinating video, you’ll see how leafhoppers, treehoppers, planthoppers, and froghoppers spring up off of the ground and take flight.

Murder Hornet Action Figure

Murder Hornet Action Figure
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In case you missed it, one of the many threats facing humanity (and the insect world) is the Vespa Mandarinia aka “Asian Giant Hornet” aka “Murder Hornet.” Revoltech’s RevoGeo line is offering an incredibly lifelike 7″ long plastic figure that captures every detail of the terrifying flying killer, complete with posable body parts.

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