Ewww! Yaay! A New Bug Book for “Micro Maniacs”

After a long, hard winter, spring is finally in the air. And, if you live in Japan, so are swarms of Asian giant hornets! These lovely insects have a wingspan as large as three inches, and pack a super painful sting. One entomologist in Tokyo described the feeling of being stung by one of these guys as having a hot nail driven into his leg. These hellacious hornets are nicknamed “Yak-killer” in Asia because of their deadly neurotoxin.

But forgive my manners — you want a peek at this insect? — Here you go:

I learned about this interesting bug, and many more, while listening to an interview on NPR with Amy Stewart about her fascinating new book WICKED BUGS. The subtitle is pretty great, too: The Louse That Conquered Napoleon’s Army & Other Diabolical Insects.

Ever since I wrote my kids science book MICRO MANIA, I’ve been stunned by the dazzling variety and quantity of creepy crawly critters in the world. (During the NPR interview, Amy Stewart shares this stunner: If all the insects in the world today were divided evenly among the human population, each of us would get about 200 million of ’em.) I can’t wait to read WICKED BUGS to learn more about such bizarre and icky creatures such as bat bugs. During mating, male bat bugs have an cruel behavior –rather than looking for a specific body part to inject their sperm into the female’s body, they stab her abdomen repeatedly, in order to deposit their sperm into her bloodstream. Almost makes those pesky bedbugs seem charming…

paper airplane and crumbs