Questions tagged [insects]

For questions focused on insects and other, similar forms of life (such as spiders).

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Why are there so many mosquitoes in the Arctic?

TL-DR: How to create a world with ecology similar to ours, that doesn't have such abominable plagues of mosquitoes in its Arctic summer? It is tempting to think of mosquitoes as a pest of the tropics, ...
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  • 4,398
8 votes
2 answers
124 views

How far across the sea can mosquitoes disperse?

One of the more interesting facts about the biogeography of Hawaii is that mosquitoes were not always present; they only arrived in the early nineteenth century, as stowaways aboard oceangoing ships. ...
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  • 4,398
5 votes
3 answers
116 views

A symbiotic bark beetle: how does it work?

In our world bark beetles can bring serious damages to forests which they infest, by killing the tree which they attack when they feed and breed between the bark and the wood of their host. I am ...
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  • 237k
3 votes
6 answers
143 views

How to attack with War Lice?

You are the commander of the China Special Forces and Reconnaissance Company of the 13th United Nations Force Intervention Brigade, based at Minot Air Force Base. Your location in Dakota is part of ...
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2 votes
1 answer
131 views

Could a human be captured in a web?

Could an arthropod or similar creature make a web, using silk and other arthropodal secretions, that is large, strong, sticky enough to entrap a human that walks into it? The creature would be bound ...
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  • 11.8k
5 votes
1 answer
178 views

Bluejumpers - could insects evolve to detect bluetooth?

Evolved from fleas, 'bluejumpers' can detect frequenties around 2.4 GHz, which makes them sensitive to bluetooth devices. A neat trick to find hairy victims that are using smart wearables. Their sense ...
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6 votes
2 answers
1k views

How do you farm flies?

Fly meat is likely a more efficient source of protein than traditional livestock, such as cows, sheep, pigs, chickens, and the like, in that: Flies can feed on essentially any biomatter, including ...
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  • 9,626
4 votes
2 answers
275 views

What would a eusocial species of lepidopterans look like?

I am writing a science-fiction story that takes place some million years in a future Earth. There is a species of lepidopterans that evolved to become eusocial. They are my gnomes. My species is a ...
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4 votes
3 answers
1k views

Would Anthropomorphic Bugs and Crustaceans Need Armor?

In my book series, many of the sentient races that exist are anthropomorphized versions of real animals. This has been mostly problem-free with vertebrates, but I have a question regarding ...
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18 votes
6 answers
2k views

Parasitoid wasp targeting humans: which tissue would they target?

Parasitoid wasps are kind of a nightmarish bug: they lay eggs in their target, usually a caterpillar; the eggs hatch and the larvae grow inside the body of the target, feeding on non essential tissue ...
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  • 237k
4 votes
2 answers
154 views

Would larger silkworms make silk cheaper?

Let's say that there is a large silkworm species, their body being about 70cm (about 2.3ft) in length. Other than their abnormal size, they are just regular silkworms (except for needing much food, of ...
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  • 787
4 votes
3 answers
132 views

Feasibility of endochitin and its use in making bugs bigger

To summarize, endochitin would be chitin that an insect uses for internal reinforcement as beams or some sort of network of structures that would grow along with their chitin exoskeleton. This would ...
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  • 927
3 votes
1 answer
221 views

Can you make felt from fluffy bees?

The bees of my world have a thick coating of fluff. A portion of the fluff is made up of branched fibres, roughly resembling a spiny/prickly plant-shoot. Could these fibres, if they were the only ones ...
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  • 11.8k
4 votes
2 answers
157 views

What issues could multiple lanes of travel in the air pose in a city?

In the world I am working on, society is made up of multiple species of equally intelligent/sapient humanoid insects that operate extremely similar to humans. Cities contain many different species of ...
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4 votes
2 answers
62 views

What environmental pressures would drive arthropods to evolve a more "efficient" circulatory and respiratory system?

I already made two different questions about similar things, How could an efficient respiratory system evolve for giant arthropods? and How could an efficient circulatory and cardiovascular system ...
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  • 2,581
2 votes
3 answers
157 views

insect square cube law

Removing respiratory problems due to primitive lungs, is there any reason why giant insects can't exist? after all we have giraffes which are enormous but have incredibly skinny legs, quetzalcoatls ...
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4 votes
1 answer
134 views

How arthropods could evolve a placoderm-like skeleton (semi-exoskeleton)?

I recently made this question about the viability of a placoderm-like skeleton to permit arthropods grow till giantsizes, getting a mechanism which I decided to call "semi-exoskeleton" to ...
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  • 2,581
4 votes
1 answer
108 views

Is placoderm-like armor (semi-exoskeleton) viable for giant arthropods?

I thought this model could possibly work as a possible way to get a functional system for giant arthropods, but I realized with problems when I was writing an answer to this question Are '...
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  • 2,581
3 votes
3 answers
176 views

How arthropods could evolve an endoskeleton?

Due to similar answers in the multiple questions I have asked about giant arthropods, seems like the presence of an exoskeleton is a bigger limitation for giant arthropods than their cardiovascular or ...
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  • 2,581
2 votes
1 answer
127 views

How could an efficient circulatory and cardiovascular system evolve for giant arthropods?

This question will be highly related with this other How could an efficient respiratory system evolve for giant arthropods?, because both systems do an important and combined contribution to ...
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  • 2,581
2 votes
1 answer
267 views

How would warm-blooded insects work?

Like would that even be possible in any way, could it happen and why or why not? Would the environment also suffer because of the warm-blooded insect(s)?
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17 votes
9 answers
4k views

How to disguise insect meat?

The rot-weevil is a 10cm long flightless beetle (though not truly a weevil). It eats a wide variety of food, most of which is obtained from civilised settlements. If people wished to trap and sell ...
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  • 11.8k
11 votes
10 answers
6k views

Why do I still want insect screens?

I have magical insect repellent that prevents nuisance1,2 insects from landing on me, biting/stinging me, or congregating within, say, 1m of my face. Would I still want to employ insect screening on ...
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  • 14.1k
7 votes
4 answers
180 views

How would this Eusocial species deal with large Dragons?

My world has Eusocial Wyverns that live in groups of a thousand or so. They are about the size of rats. They have several castes, similar to ants or naked mole rats. All members of the same cast are ...
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1 vote
1 answer
170 views

How will these mammal-bugs retain their bug-like features?

As a sequel to my first question, I have decided to ask another! Let's say, that these bugs have evolved to look completely like a mammal. Fur, skin, eyes, etc. What about their internal biology could ...
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-5 votes
2 answers
136 views

How fast can a cockroach scaled up to 1:72 scale(72 times bigger) run and move barring the square-cube law? [closed]

I had a passing idea for a world where giant cockroaches attack a city and was wondering how fast can they run at this scale. I know that even normal-sized cockroaches are fast, so must be even more ...
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-2 votes
1 answer
171 views

Which animals would Ents (tree men) want to cull? [closed]

Imagine you were an ent, a tree person, and the day is going just fine, until.... TERMITES!! You panic, stumbling through the glen as you try to scratch the annoying, horrifying and perhaps even ...
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  • 4,078
2 votes
2 answers
137 views

How quickly can a swarm of insects eat 1kg of meat? [closed]

In my story a swarm of insects (ants, beetles, etc) can be controlled and directed to devour a carcass. Assuming there are enough insects to actually consume that much flesh, how long would it take ...
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  • 1,863
2 votes
4 answers
444 views

can Elf be in family with Fairies and Angels?(updated)

need a bit help with an Elf species I am making. I am thinking about making them family with fairies who is in my world; some type of dragonfly. of course, I have no idea this is possible. My Elf ...
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15 votes
8 answers
3k views

Maintaining realism while having giant insects?

In my world, there was a nuclear apocalypse, and the resulting radiation, along with biochemical pathogens, lead to a dramatic increase in mutation and evolution. Now, originally in my world I wanted ...
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  • 11k
3 votes
6 answers
264 views

Could a bug sting induce a human body to explode?

The setup is similar to a funny horror movie or like Troma movies. Deaths only happen to insignificant, unnamed characters. However, I would like to have some plausible science back-up (maybe slightly ...
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  • 643
9 votes
2 answers
661 views

Where would the best cuts of meat be on a giant insect?

Let's say one had a giant insect the size of a sheep or a cow that some sapient species was raising as meat livestock. These animals would have to be butchered to be eaten and cannot simply be eaten ...
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  • 13.3k
3 votes
1 answer
158 views

How Big Can An Land Arthropod Get In Our Modern Earth Climate

I've done some research into giant arthropods lately. The largest land arthropod currently is the Coconut Crab, but I'm wondering how much bigger an arthropod can get in our current Earth climate and ...
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5 votes
3 answers
246 views

Giant bugs part 1: nature

So a little bit ago I asked a question that asked multiple questions so my new strategy is too ask multiple questions. First off this first question is going to revolve around the bugs themselves and ...
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  • 129
2 votes
3 answers
249 views

In a medieval society with gigantic insects and arachnids which ones could be useful [closed]

so i'm thinking of a medieval society in a world with giant bugs. let's say the honeybee was about the size of a house mouse for reference (which makes the insects and arachnid nine times it's size). ...
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  • 129
5 votes
2 answers
173 views

How would a species descended from dipterans become eusocial?

I am writing a script about a post-apocalyptic Earth. Technically, humans and many other sentient species survived, but almost all bee species are extinct. But mosquitoes survived and became the most ...
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8 votes
1 answer
300 views

How loud of a sound would a human-sized cicada produce?

Cicadas are known to produce very loud sounds which they make by rapidly buckling their tymbals, some of which are loud enough to exceed the threshhold that causes discomfort in humans (110 decibels), ...
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  • 13.3k
2 votes
2 answers
363 views

Giant velvet mites?

Velvet mites are some of the largest mites in the world, with species in the genus Dinothrombium reaching 12 mm in length (absolutely massive for a mite). What is the largest possible size a velvet ...
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  • 1,274
1 vote
3 answers
224 views

Would it be possible to use a mount that requires a much higher temperature than the rider?

Would it be possible for an insect-sized intelligent species to ride a larger insect-sized species that can only survive at around 600°C, and if so, what would the mount need to be kept both warm and ...
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  • 11.8k
8 votes
1 answer
97 views

Genetically engineered bionically enhanced insects in lieu of robots

For context, I was reading about various research groups installing implants and cameras onto insects to use them as reconnaissance drones in high risk areas. I’m wondering how feasible it would be, ...
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  • 161
5 votes
4 answers
220 views

Bug-sized halberd?

I'm constructing a world where insects battle using medieval and fantasy weapons. I'm trying to think of an object that could be used by a bug as a halberd - that is, part spear, part axe. For example,...
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3 votes
2 answers
1k views

Humanoid with Insect like Wings

So In Fiction, I think it's more common to see Humanoids with avian-like wings rather than insect wings. I was wondering if it's possible for a humanoid to evolve insect like wings and even if the ...
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13 votes
8 answers
1k views

Can an insect evolve to look and function like a mammal?

I'm working with this alien race that looks and functions essentially like a mammal - skin, muscles, hair, internal bones, large size, etc. - but evolved from an insect or other bug. They're a large, ...
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8 votes
7 answers
565 views

For what reason would insects grow in size over a long evolutionary period?

What possible evolutionary reasons would there be for insects to increase their physical size over a long period? What benefits would be gained by an insect being larger? For example, say ants ...
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4 votes
1 answer
190 views

Maximum scale for "bumblebee" flight?

Bumblebees famously cannot fly under fixed wing aerodynamics--and they don't. Rather, they "row" the air, moving their wings back and forth and varying the pitch to push air down like a reciprocating ...
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8 votes
3 answers
539 views

Can insects evolve their basic anatomy to grow in size?

In my fantasy world, there are several species - both sapient and non-sapient. They all originally evolved from a group of insects that, after millions of years of isolation and no competition, have ...
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  • 3,277
4 votes
1 answer
119 views

Can an Insect's Pheromones Be Visible?

In my story, there is a type of bee that releases a pheromone during mating season that is visible at night in brightly lit areas. This is similar to how you can see rain more easily at night if you ...
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  • 6,112
6 votes
4 answers
563 views

We Have Successfully Established Plants and Insects on Mars. How Long Will It Take Them to Colonize the Entire Planet?

In my last question, I have asked on how, once Mars has been terraformed, Terran species of plants and the insects on which the majority of them rely on would adapt to Mars's longer year. By far, the ...
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  • 14.4k
2 votes
1 answer
183 views

How Can Plants and Insects Cope With Living on a Terraformed Mars?

If we humans are serious about terraforming our famous neighbor, Mars, then the terraforming process would take thousands of years before it becomes habitable enough for humans to live in. But that ...
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  • 14.4k
0 votes
1 answer
171 views

What would be a good size for rideable creatures? [closed]

I am making a world where the environment is much larger than the people who live in it, and is in a swamp setting. My problem is that I would like to have the characters riding on wild animals (fish, ...
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