Some Fun Insect Facts for Kids

“Insect” and “fun” are two words you probably thought you would never see in the same sentence. But when they are not injuring you or damaging your property, these critters are quite interesting. Additionally, many insects are harmless. In fact, they are either a benefit or a hazard. If they aren’t a hazard, they aren’t our problem.

There are between six and eight million species of insects on earth. Almost half of them are some kind of beetle. The oldest species, Devonian Rhyniognatha hirsti, is about 400 million years old. The fossil record suggests that these insects had wings.

All insects have just three body parts (head, abdomen, and thorax) as well as three pairs of legs. Yes, spiders have four pairs of legs, but they aren’t insects. More on that below.

Gerridaes, and a few other insect species, can walk on water.

Ants, termites, and bees are basically the only insects which live together in well-organized colonies. Other insects, like wasps, live together, but there is no social strata.

Female crickets don’t chirp.

Most insects just live a few weeks. They basically exist only to breed. But a termite queen may live up to fifty years. Most termite queens lay up to 6,000 eggs a day during peak breeding periods. However, a Southeast Asian Macrotermes hellicosus was clocked at two eggs per second (43,000 per day).

No one really knows why, but insects do not live near ocean water.

The largest bug in history was the ancient dragonfly Meganeuropsis. It had a 2.5-foot wingspan and lived between 250 and 300 million years ago.

Today, the giant weta in New Zealand, a cricket-like critter, is the largest insect by weight. Adults weigh about a pound. The smallest insect in the world is the Costa Rican fairyfly (0.005472 inches).

Silkworms really do produce silk. In fact, silkworms are the leading source of silk in the world.

Ten quadrillion ants (1.4 million for every man, woman, and child) live on the planet at any one point in time.

Some cicada chirps are 120 decibels loud. That’s louder than a lawnmower, jazz concert, or an ambulance siren heard from inside with the windows down. Generally, exposure to sounds louder than 110 decibels cause hearing loss after just a few minutes of exposure.

Antarctica is the only place on earth where there are no bees.

Spiders are not insects. They are arachnids.

If you want to know more insect fun facts, contact us. Or, if you want to get rid of them, you can call us for that too.