Errah is a bookwormy and logophilic writer and science & technology teacher. He often writes about scientific ideas, theories, and research.
Insects are invertebrates or animals without a backbone. They fall under the phylum of arthropods (which means they feature a segmented body, an exoskeleton, and paired jointed appendages). Their bodies make up of a head, two antennae, a thorax (the middle of their bodies), an abdomen, and three pairs of legs. The majority of animals on Earth are represented by this class of invertebrates. They make up 75% of all animal species that humans have identified. These creatures are widespread throughout the entire planet.
The majority of us despise insects because they bite, have creepy appearances, or transmit diseases (like mosquitoes and flies). Thankfully, not all bug species have such horrifying and repulsive appearances. In reality, there are lots of lovely and colorful bugs.
Here are the top 17 most beautiful insects in the world.
1. Pyrops candelaria
The lanternfly is a strange yet lovely species of planthopper that grow 2 inches in length and native to China and Southeast Asia. It is known for its long rostrum or "nose" that resembles a rhino horn. The rostrum is a tool used to perforate fruits, plants, and trees to get juices and sap for consumption. Its wings resemble those of a bright butterfly. The forewings are green with gold spots, while the hindwings are orange with black tips. Despite having wings, it prefers to hop rather than fly. When it gets weary of hopping, it starts to walk, and the way it does so is adorable because it moves side by side like a little crab.
2. Peacock Butterfly
The peacock butterfly is one of the most beautiful butterfly species in the world. It has vibrant lines and patterns all over its rusty red wings with eyespots that are a blend of blue, white, red, yellow, and violet. The eyespots serve as a defense mechanism to deter prospective predators. In response to danger, the peacock butterfly spreads its wings, revealing what appear to be "eyes" that resemble those of larger animals.
This species can be found throughout Asia and Europe's temperate regions. It has a wingspan that can reach 2.5 inches, and females often grow a little bit bigger than males. It can consume a wide variety of food. Other than nectar, it is drawn to the tree sap and juice of rotten fruits as well.
3. Beautiful Demoiselle
The beautiful demoiselle is a species of large damselfly found throughout Europe. It can grow as long as 5 cm in body length and its wingspan is around 6.5 cm. The color of its resplendent wings varies depending on the gender; males have metallic dark blue-green wings, while females have lustrous brown-green wings. The color of its iridescent dark green body changes depending on the light, it can also appear blue or blue-green. You can find this insect near areas where there is rushing water. It is a very beautiful damselfly and truly lives up to its name.
4. Domino Cockroach
You've probably never seen a cockroach as cool as this one. This insect resembles the rectangular block from your favorite tile-based game, the domino. It features a black body with white dots. This cockroach lives in the scrubby woods of India where it hides under leaf litter and only emerges at dusk to forage. You can keep it as a pet because it is not considered a pest.
5. Spotted Tortoise Beetle
The spotted tortoise beetles are tiny golden brown beetles with black dots on their elytra. Their body is about the size of a ladybird, and they have a covering carapace that resembles a tortoise's shell in terms of protection. The carapace is transparent, dome-shaped, and has flat margins. When threatened, the spotted tortoise beetles press down this covering to hide their appendages, shielding them from harm and keeping them safe underneath in a way similar to how a tortoise might retreat into its shell.
Their larvae exhibit the behavior of carrying their waste along with cast skins on their back to create a "shield or umbrella" to ward off predators. This species is widely dispersed over North America.
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6. Orchid Mantis
An orchid mantis is a beautiful-looking praying mantis that grows as long as 7 cm. The similarity of its appearance to a flower is how it got its name. It has a pink and white body and its lobed legs resemble petals. It typically inhabits flowers to blend in with the blooms to avoid being spotted by either its prey or predators. It also sways back and forth as it moves to mimic wind-blown flowers.
7. Picasso Bug
The Picasso bug's coloring is reminiscent of a Pablo Picasso painting. Its beautiful green carapace has red geometric patterns that resemble a work of art. Unlike most other bugs, its carapace, which covers the wings, is only one piece. The insects primarily feed on the juices of different plants. It is native to both tropical and subtropical Africa.
8. Panda Ant
This panda ant's coloration is similar to that of a panda bear from China. It is not an ant at all, but a wasp. Because the female lacks wings, it is frequently misidentified as an ant. The sting of this wasp is extremely painful, earning it the nickname "cow killer." These insects prefer to live in dry, sandy, tropical environments, such as Chile's desert.
9. Spiny Flower Mantis
This praying mantis' adult form is white with orange and green stripes. Its name is derived from the spiny outgrowth on its abdomen. Two of its wings have black-and-yellow swirls that mimic the eyes of larger animals and are used to frighten off predators. When threatened, the spiny flower raises its wings, revealing its "eyes." The size of this creature ranges from 2.5 cm to 5 cm (1-2 in). When they are young, they resemble black ants. They are indigenous to Southern and Eastern Africa.
10. Cecropia Moth Caterpillar
This species' newly hatched larvae are black due to small black hairs growing all over their bodies. Fully mature caterpillars are yellowish-green in color with yellow, red, and blue tubercles surrounded by black spines. They feed on the leaves of numerous trees and shrubs.
The adult form is the largest native moth in North America. It has a 160 mm wingspan (6 inches). It won't live long (about two weeks) because it lacks a digestive system and cannot eat. Its only purpose is to mate and lay eggs.
11. Achrioptera Fallax
Stick insects are well-known for their ability to blend into their surroundings. The eggs of this species are hard to spot because they resemble seeds. Nymphs are brown, long, and small, resembling sticks. The nymphs will develop into either an electric blue male or a much larger brown female. Both sexes have red, tiny, flightless wings in proportion to their long bodies. They flash it at predators to frighten them away. These insects are found only in Madagascar.
12. Palawan Birdwing Butterfly
The Palawan birdwing butterfly is a large, brightly colored butterfly that is only found in the Philippines. Males have black wings with tooth-shaped, electric-green markings, and their black thorax is covered in red hair. Females, on the other hand, have entirely brown wings with white markings.
It is one of just two species in its genus; the other species is Rajah Brooke's birdwing, in which males have larger green markings on their wings. Unfortunately, because of its attractive appearance, it has become endangered as a result of over-collection.
13. Trilobite Beetle
The trilobite beetle is also known as the net-winged beetle. It has a flattened, dark body with armor-like coverings. It is named after the extinct, prehistoric trilobites because the females resemble them.
This beetle is native to the tropical forests of Asia, with ranges stretching from India to the Philippines. It spends the majority of its time hiding beneath leaf litter or logs. They eat slime from algae and fungi and decomposing wood as well.
14. Acraga Hamata Moth Caterpillar
It resembles a nudibranch made of glass or sweet gummy candy (hence the name "slug caterpillar"). Its body a semi-translucent, jelly-like in appearance. The bright orange color of the spiny protuberances warns predators that they are toxic to consume. This insect lives in Costa Rica, Colombia, and Panama.
15. Rainbow Grasshopper
The rainbow grasshopper, also known as painted grasshopper or barber pole grasshopper, occurs in the prairie and desert grasslands of Mexico, the United States, and Canada. It is a small wingless, vivid grasshopper with a length of no more than two inches. Its body is primarily black with some patterns of red, green, and yellow. Like the Acraga hamata moth caterpillars, its coloration protects it by serving as a warning to the enemy that it is poisonous and unappealing as food.
16. Spotted Lanterfly
Although it resembles a butterfly, the spotted lanternfly is more closely related to cicada and aphid species. It has tan forewings that are speckled with black spots, and on the tips are rectangular markings that are arranged somewhat like bricks on the tips. When the wings are spread out, the hindwings become visible which have a tricolor pattern on them consisting of stripes of crimson red with black spots, white in the middle, and black tips.
Although the spotted lanternfly has a lovely appearance, it is a pest because it feeds on the plant juices, which kills the plants. Its native habitats are China, India, and Vietnam but it has spread to many parts of the world as an invasive species.
17. Rainbow Scarab
The Rainbow scarab is a species of dung beetle native to North America. It got its name from its metallic, iridescent, multi-colored body. In appearance, it resembles the triceratops dinosaur because it has a long facial horn and a plate attached to the head. The beetle is entirely black, but the upper surface of the head, pronotum, and elytra are yellow, bronze, and green, respectively.
The rainbow scarab is a beloved exotic pet among collectors because it is stunning and harmless. However, if you decide to keep this as a pet, you should know that its main food source is dung, though you can also give it rotten fruit or beetle jelly.
A Complete Guide Book for Petting Stick Insects and Leaf Insects
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.
© 2020 Errah Caunca
Rose McCoy on August 22, 2020:
Wow, what a cool article! Keep it up!
Benz Aquino on July 11, 2020:
Panda Ant is my favorite.
Monty Ortega on June 02, 2020:
Very informative. ☺