Northern Walkingstick (Family Diapheromeridae)

Northern Walkingsticks (Diapheromera femorata), the only species in northern North America, is 3 ½” to 4” in length. Most species in the U.S. are wingless; insect legs are attached to its middle section (thorax). Walkingsticks are terrestrial—if you see a similar critter in the water, it’s an (unrelated) water scorpion.

The 12 Bugs of Christmas

With apologies to Olde English Folk Songs everywhere, here is the Second Annual Twelve Bugs of Christmas, featuring a Baker’s Dozen that were photographed this year but that did/will not appear in BOTWs. These pictures are a tribute to the joy of stumbling into the right place at the right time.

Walkingstick (Family Heteronemiidae)

Shy and nocturnal, Walkingsticks graze on leaves of forest trees and, during a population boom, can damage them. There are two reasons for camouflage—to hide and to hunt. Turns out that despite one of Mother Nature’s better camouflage jobs, many predators aren’t fooled; walkingsticks are spotted and eaten by a variety of songbirds, rodents and mantises.