Giant water bugs are massive and horrifyingly nicknamed toe-biters for the painful manner they assault human ft that trample of their lakes and ponds. But it seems they make actually nice dad and mom. Or not less than the males do. Like with a lot cuter seahorses, feminine water bugs drop their eggs off with the males of their species, who then tote the younger ones round till they hatch. They carry the younger and breathe with their butts!
In the newest video from PBS station KQED’s sequence Deep Look, we be taught extra concerning the water bug’s parenting expertise. And that truth we talked about above: they breathe with their rear finish. They have a kind of snorkel again there, pulling air right into a bubble they entice under their wings. They then pull from that air provide whereas swimming underwater.
To get began on their highway to parenthood, male water bugs shake their butts on the water floor, which sends out ripples. Females come by and, in the event that they approve, mate and then lay eggs on his again. He carries these eggs round for a couple of weeks, alongside with others that totally different females lay on him. The piggy-backing infants want air so he brings them out of the water sometimes. He collects his personal air on the identical time by sticking his butt out of the water.
Along with all these enjoyable info additionally come some horrifying ones. Like that some species of water bugs can develop up to 4.5 inches long. And that they liquify their prey’s insides and slurp them up, together with bigger animals like snakes and even ducklings!
Other cool issues we’ve realized from the Deep Look YouTube channel embody that barnacles have giant penises, horseshoe crabs mate in giant orgies, and starfish can gallop. Plenty extra enjoyable info about insect rear ends come due to Invertebutt week. Enjoy!
Melissa is Nerdist’s science & know-how employees author. She additionally moderates “science of” panels at conventions and co-hosts Star Warsologies, a podcast about science and Star Wars. Follow her on Twitter @melissatruth.