Thursday, June 18, 2009

Unusual pets: stick insects

Have you ever considered buying a stick insect as a pet? Stick insects can hide in plain sight, because their camouflage makes them blend in with almost any surrounding. If you blow on them, they can even swing back and forth on their legs so as to mimic the movement of a twig in the breeze! You get nearly three thousand species of stick insects. The Australian spiny leaf (scientific name, extatosoma tiaratum) can grow to resemble an eight inch long branch with dead leaves for legs. The only stick insect that should be avoided is the American walking stick (scientific name, anisomorpia bupestroides). This insect is characterized by the two stripes you will find on its back. What makes it slightly more dangerous than other stick insects is that it can spray an acidic compound that may cause temporary blindness.