Many of us struggle with the concept of creepy crawlies. Most of us in the cooler climates tend to have it quite easy but for our unfortunate friends in South America, Africa and Oceania; the bugs are huge, weird and in rare cases dangerous.
Insects are incredibly important to our planet’s ecosystem and some studies suggest that there could be 200 million insects per human being.
Brahmin Moth Caterpillar
This one may not be dangerous but it looks like it should be in a Tim Burton movie! As is usually the case with strange caterpillars, the moths that they turn into are beautiful.
They are most commonly found in South East Asia and they are most definitely one of the strangest insects on the planet.
The issue with this one is obvious, it’s on the list because Giant Wetas have been recorded to weigh as much as a tennis ball. Thankfully for the residents of New Zealand where the Giant Weta exclusively lives, they are herbivorous and gentle creatures. Many are found at high altitudes and when the temperature drops below −5 °C (23 °F) they freeze solid.
Assassin bugs are able to bring down prey twice their size. They consume their victims by piercing prey and injecting them with a cocktail of toxins and enzymes, simultaneously paralysing and liquefying them. Once their insides are completely turned to mush, they drink the soup through the straw they pierced them with. To make them worse, many types of assassin bug are powerful enough to bite humans causing intense pain and swelling.
Titan beetles are aptly named as they can reach over 6 inches in length. Their incredibly powerful jaws are strong enough to snap pencils and cut into flesh. Luckily, they aren’t interested in eating humans and are usually calm. The feature that puts these enormous beetles on the nope list is simply the fact that they can fly. The idea of a 6 inch long beetle flying around is absolutely horrifying.
Giant Silkworm Caterpillar
Although these unusual caterpillars turn into beautiful moths, they are the scariest on the list by far. The Silkworm Caterpillar is native to South America and is responsible for multiple human deaths every year. Their spiny bristles are able to inject enough deadly venom to amount to a 2.5% death rate among stung humans. This is particularly impressive when you realise that they caterpillar is only around 2 inches in length.
Amazonian Giant Centipede
These beasts can reach lengths of up to 12 inches (30cm) and will eat pretty much anything they can, including mammals and reptiles. They can consume anything as large as bats, mice and sparrow-sized birds. In order to catch bats, they have been known to cling to cave ceilings with a few legs while grabbing and eating with the rest.
The Southern Flannel moth caterpillar or Puss caterpillar is native to the southern United States and Mexico. It is often referred to as a toupee due to the fluffy appearance that often makes them appear completely harmless. Their cute looking fuzz actually contains venomous spines that cause extremely painful skin reactions.
These cute looking fluffy flies are responsible for the horrific Botfly larvae extraction videos I’m sure many of you have come across. A Botfly will use mosquitoes to transfer their eggs to a suitable mammal host. When the mosquito bites a human or other suitable mammal, the larvae will burrow in through the wound made by the mosquito. As the larvae grow underneath the skin, people report feeling them moving around.