22+ Best Insect Facts that You Should Know

Insects are the planet’s most diverse group of animals, with an estimated 5.5 million species. They can be found in almost every environment, from the bottom of the ocean to the tops of the highest mountains.

Insects are vital in ecosystems as pollinators, decomposers, and food for other animals. Despite their importance, many people find insects to be creepy or scary.

This article will explore some interesting facts about insects that may help you appreciate these fascinating creatures.

Table of Contents

Interesting Insect Facts

πŸ‘‰ Insects outnumber humans by a factor of 200 million.

Insects are incredibly abundant, with estimates suggesting that there are 200 million insects for every human on the planet.

This is partly due to their small size, which allows them to occupy many different niches in the environment.

Insects also reproduce quickly, with some species able to produce thousands of offspring in a single year. This abundance makes insects a crucial food source for many animals, from birds to bears.

πŸ‘‰ Some insects can see ultraviolet light.

Many insects can see ultraviolet (UV) light, which is invisible to humans. This ability is particularly useful for finding food and mates, as some flowers and insects have distinctive patterns in the UV spectrum.

Some butterflies, for example, have UV-reflective patterns on their wings that are only visible to other butterflies with UV-sensitive eyes.

πŸ‘‰ Insects are the only invertebrates that can fly

While other invertebrates, such as squid and jellyfish, can swim through the air, insects are the only invertebrates that can fly.

This ability is due to their lightweight exoskeletons and powerful wing muscles, which allow them to generate lift and maneuver in the air. Some insects, such as dragonflies, can fly at speeds of up to 60 miles per hour.

πŸ‘‰ Termites build the largest structures of any animal

Termites are famous for their ability to build large, complex structures, such as mounds and nests.

In fact, some termite mounds can be over 30 feet tall and contain millions of individual insects. These structures are made from a mixture of saliva, dirt, and other materials, designed to regulate the nest’s temperature and humidity.

Termites are also important decomposers, breaking down dead wood and other plant material into nutrients that other organisms can use.

πŸ‘‰ The heaviest insect in the world is the Goliath beetle

The Goliath beetle (Goliathus goliaths) is the heaviest insect in the world, with some individuals weighing up to 3.5 ounces.

These beetles are found in tropical African forests and feed primarily on fruit and tree sap. Despite their large size, Goliath beetles are relatively harmless to humans and are often kept as pets by insect enthusiasts.

πŸ‘‰ Many insects can walk on water.

Some insects, such as water striders, can walk on water’s surface. This ability is due to the surface tension of the water, which allows insects with specialized leg structures to distribute their weight evenly and avoid breaking through the surface.

Water striders are commonly found in ponds and streams and feed on small insects and other invertebrates that fall onto the water’s surface.

πŸ‘‰ Some insects can produce light.

Bioluminescence is the ability of some organisms to produce light through a chemical reaction. Several groups of insects can have bioluminescence, including fireflies, glow worms, and click beetles.

In many cases, light is produced to attract mates or deter predators. Fireflies, for example, use their flashing lights to signal to potential mates, while click beetles can use their glowing bodies to scare off predators.

πŸ‘‰ Stoneflies perform push-ups to draw potential mates

Stoneflies are insects that perform push-ups to entice a potential mate. There are 500 different species of stoneflies now recognized, all of which like to live in streams and other bodies of water.

Male stoneflies beat their bodies against the ground or foliage during ground mating to entice female mates. 

Stoneflies Perform Pushups To Draw Potential Mates

πŸ‘‰Ants can lift objects up to 50 times their body weight

Ants are known for their impressive strength, with some species able to lift objects that are up to 50 times their body weight.

This strength comes from their small size and the powerful muscles in their jaws and legs. Ants use their strength to carry food, defend their nests, and move objects in their environment.

πŸ‘‰ Some insects can survive freezing temperatures.

While many insects adapt to warm environments, some species survive freezing temperatures.

One example is the Alaskan beetle, which can survive temperatures as low as -148 degrees Fahrenheit.

These insects produce a type of antifreeze in their blood that prevents ice crystals from forming and damaging their cells.

πŸ‘‰ Cicadas spend most of their lives underground.

Cicadas are known for their loud, buzzing calls, which males produce to attract mates. However, most of a cicada’s life is spent underground, where they feed on tree roots and go through several stages of development.

Depending on the species, cicadas can spend anywhere from 2 to 17 years underground before emerging as adults.

πŸ‘‰ Honeybees can recognize human faces.

Honeybees can recognize individual human faces, which is a remarkable feat for such a small-brained animal.

This ability is considered important for bees living in large colonies, as it allows them to recognize and communicate with specific members of the colony.

Honeybees are also famous for their role as pollinators, crucial for producing many crops and flowers.

πŸ‘‰ Insects have been around for over 400 million years.

Insects are one of the oldest groups of animals on the planet, with fossil evidence suggesting that they have been around for over 400 million years.

This longevity is due to their ability to adapt to a wide range of environments and their rapid reproductive cycles, which allow them to evolve and diversify quickly.

Despite their long history, many insect species face threats from habitat destruction, climate change, and other human activities.

πŸ‘‰ The praying mantis can turn its head 180 degrees.

The praying mantis is a well-known predator often seen preying on other insects.

One of their most fascinating abilities is turning their head a full 180 degrees, which allows them to scan their environment for potential prey or predators.

The praying mantis also has two large, compound eyes that allow it to see in three dimensions and detect movement.

πŸ‘‰ Fireflies are not flies but are actually beetles.

Despite their name, fireflies are not flies but are a type of beetle. There are over 2,000 species of fireflies, and they are found around the world.

Fireflies are famous for their bioluminescence, produced by special cells in their abdomen. This light is used for communication, with males using light flashes to attract females.

πŸ‘‰ Some insects can see ultraviolet light.

While humans can only see a small portion of the electromagnetic spectrum, many species of insects can see ultraviolet light.

This ability allows them to see things that are invisible to us, such as the nectar guides on flowers, which help them locate and feed on the nectar.

Some butterflies even have ultraviolet-reflecting patches on their wings, which help them attract mates.

πŸ‘‰ The queen ant can live for up to 30 years.

Ant colonies are organized around a single queen responsible for laying eggs and maintaining the colony.

While worker ants have relatively short lifespans, with some species living only a few months, the queen ant can live for up to 30 years.

The queen can lay millions of eggs during her lifetime, ensuring the colony’s survival.

πŸ‘‰ The stick insect can grow up to 12 inches long.

The stick insect, also known as the walking stick, is a master of camouflage, with a body that resembles a twig or branch.

These insects are found worldwide; some species can grow up to 12 inches long. Stick insects are herbivores, feeding on leaves and other plant matter, and are preyed upon by birds, reptiles, and other predators.

Insects are some of the most fascinating and diverse animals on the planet, with many adaptations and behaviors that allow them to thrive in almost any environment. 

πŸ‘‰ Insects Need Sun, Too

Various insects need sunshine. The light helps the dragonfly stay alive while living among people.

One of the interesting insect facts about these recognizable flyers is that they get their energy from the sun’s warmth, which gives them the strength they need to soar. When the sun goes down, dragonflies settle to rest and rely on their solar energy reserves to stay alive. 

Insect Need Sun Too

πŸ‘‰ Insects can communicate with each other using chemical signals

Many species of insects use chemical signals, known as pheromones, to communicate with each other.

These pheromones are produced by special glands and are used to signal alarm, attract mates, or mark territory.

For example, ants use pheromones to mark trails between food sources and their nest, allowing others to follow the trail and find the food.

πŸ‘‰ Insects are a crucial food source for many other animals

Insects are an important food source for many other animals, including birds, reptiles, and mammals.

For example, bats are known to feed on insects such as moths and beetles, while birds such as swallows and flycatchers are famous for catching flying insects in mid-air.

Without insects, many ecosystems would collapse, highlighting their crucial role in maintaining biodiversity.

πŸ‘‰ Some insects are used in medicine.

While many people view insects as pests or nuisances, some species have actually been used for medicinal purposes for centuries.

For example, the Chinese have long used the dried bodies of ants to treat various ailments, including arthritis and gout.

Additionally, compounds found in the venom of some species of wasps and spiders have been shown to have potential medical uses, such as in treating certain types of cancer.

πŸ‘‰ The bombardier beetle can spray boiling hot chemicals from its abdomen.

The bombardier beetle is a small, colorful insect known for its unique defense mechanism. When threatened, the beetle can spray a boiling hot mixture of chemicals from its abdomen, which can deter or even kill potential predators.

The beetle’s specialized anatomy makes this defense mechanism possible, allowing it to mix the chemicals in its body and spray them with great force.

πŸ‘‰ Insect Eyes Are Compound

Compound pupils are another well-known characteristic of insects. Ommatidia, or individual visual components, make up a compound eye.

The dragonfly has the most remarkable compound, half-spheroid eyes with ommatidia, boasting about 30,000 units. Caterpillars also have 12 pairs of pupils. 

Insect Eyes Are Compound

πŸ‘‰ Everywhere on Earth, there are insects.

Insects can be found almost everywhere globally, including in icy environments. They have adapted to exist in the darkness of caverns and on the ocean’s top in tropical jungles, scorching deserts, and glaciers. They can be found in the warmest and coldest climates on every continent. 

An aquatic insect is the water boatman, also called the big diving beetle. Great diving beetles have a clever technique that allows them to remain in the water for extended periods of time, which is an interesting fact about insects.

πŸ‘‰ Insect species outnumber other terrestrial animals.

The total number of insect species dwarfs the population of all terrestrial animals together up to this point.

Despite being numerous and diverse, land mammal species comprise only one-third of all insect species. 

Amazingly, there are 200 million insects for every person on the planet. There are roughly 91,000 distinct insect species in the United States, and scientists have identified 1.5 million various insect species worldwide.

πŸ‘‰ Some insects have voices.

The loudest singing insect on the planet is the double drummer cicada, which can be located on Australia’s east coast.

They typically reside underground and eat roots, lasting four to six years. The mature Cicada only lives a few weeks and feeds on eucalyptus sap. 

Some Insects Have Voices

πŸ‘‰ Not all insects are insects.

Although “insects” and “bugs” are often used interchangeably, they differ. According to science, both bugs and insects belong to the animal world.

The phylum Arthropoda includes arachnids, myriapods, crustaceans, and the family of insects. The head, thorax, and abdomen are the three parts of their anatomy that are segmented. They have six appendages and two antennae. 

Most bugs have a style or straw-shaped opening (slender probe). They employ this when sapping plant liquid or animal blood. Long segmented antennae with tough, dark wings where they reach the body are present, but the tips are thin and translucent. 

πŸ‘‰ Insects have many ears, but none are located on the head.

Most insects have numerous ears everywhere, but rarely on the real head, unlike humans and other mammals, which only have two ears on their upper bodies. The parasitic tachinid fly’s ears can be seen protruding from its thorax.

On their legs, crickets and katydids have sound-sensitive membranes. The grasshoppers are located on the belly. Some people can even use their lips to feel vibrations. 

πŸ‘‰ In June, June insects are most prevalent.

One of the interesting insect facts about these recognizable flyers is that they get their energy from the sun’s warmth, which gives them the strength they need to soar.

When the sun goes down, dragonflies settle to rest and rely on their solar energy reserves to stay alive. 

June Insects Are Most Prevalent

πŸ‘‰ Insects can predict the weather.

Did you know that people can predict the temperature using insects? Crickets in many parts of the world predict the weather.

By counting the number of cricket chirps heard each minute and multiplying it by four, people may determine the temperature outside. They calculate the estimated outdoor temperature by adding the result to 40.

πŸ‘‰ Insects have powerful wings. 

Insects are frequently perceived as being little, weak, and delicate. However, other aspects of these insects, like their wings, are amazingly robust. Veins reinforce their cuticle-based wings. 

The fact that insects must live with broken wings for the remainder of their lives is another astonishing detail about them. Most of the time, they survive and live with these shattered wings. 

Insects Have Powerful Wings

πŸ‘‰ Insect fart

Insects fart to release gas, just like people do. Hydrogen and methane are the two types of gas that insects most frequently create.

Additionally, some insects fart fairly strongly, but we cannot detect them because they do so in small quantities. 

πŸ‘‰ Phylliidae insects look like plant leaves.

Phylliidaeinsects, also called leaf insects, conceal themselves by resembling leaves. They blend in so perfectly with the foliage and mimic their appearance that lurking predators mistake them for leaves and ignore them.

These wandering leaves further confound their predators by swinging back and forth to resemble leaves blowing in the wind. 

Phyllide Insects Look Like Plant Insects

πŸ‘‰ Rock music appeals to termites. 

One of the most interesting insect facts is that termites utilize vibration to determine the type of wood in their immediate environment.

They can locate the optimum food supply because of this vibration. Some have speculated that they are fans of the genre since they chew wood more quickly when playing heavy metal or rock music.

πŸ‘‰ An insect’s brain 

You would think that because of their small size, insects don’t have brains, yet they do. Even the smallest insects have brains, although they are not as critical as human brains.

They can therefore survive without their head for days so long as there is no significant hemolymph or blood-like fluid loss.

πŸ‘‰ Insects are food

To survive, humans, animals, and all other species need food, which insects may give. Insects produce the ideal honey for our toast and our sweet tooth. Some insects not only generate honey but are also edible. 

While eating beetles and other insects is common in many Asian cultures, some insect species are novelty foods in the United States. The Food and Agriculture Organization estimates that more than 1,900 edible insect species are outside of beetles9.

πŸ‘‰ The garden benefits from ladybugs

While we frequently think of insects as pests, many of them are anything but. For instance, the ladybug does wonders in our plants.

The ladybugs help safeguard the garden from plant pests, harmful insects, fruit flies, and mites because it feeds on other insects. In its lifetime, it can eat 5,000 insects. 

Adult ladybugs consume more than 50 aphids each day, according to studies. In turn, this promotes higher harvest yields and controls pests like fruit flies. 

Garden Benefit from Ladybugs

πŸ‘‰ Insects can experience pain.

It’s important to note that insects experience pain, even with their tiny and delicate body parts.

Research has recently revealed that insects experience chronic pain that persists after a head injury or trauma, thanks to recent technological advances. The majority of insects and insect species do really feel pain, according to scientists. 

πŸ‘‰ Use of insects in healthcare

Some insect species aid in the treatment of illnesses and infections. Biting ant species have reportedly been employed in the past to stitch up wounds. ‘

Aside from that, research suggests that tendinitis, sclerosis, and arthritis can all be treated with bee venom from stings.

Insect Facts
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