Think your parents did weird? Well they are nothing compared to these guys! These creepy crawlies have some really strange ideas of how to take care of their babies. Here are five shocking habits insects perform on a regular basis to keep their kids safe and healthy:
1. Setting up the nursery
The dung beetle starts off our list with their strange habit: setting up the baby’s room. Dung beetles will roll up balls of dung and use them for nursery. Talk about one smelly room!
These insects get all of their nutrients from dung. When two beetles are ready to mate they will create a ball of dung, bury the ball underground, mate and then lay the eggs into the ball. The eggs will then hatch the larva safe inside the middle, providing nutrients until the larva mature and are ready to leave.
2. Lift with your legs not with your back
The Wolf Spider takes the next spot on the list. This doting mother is very protective of her young. After mating, the spider will carry around her egg sac attached to their abdomen until the eggs are ready to hatch. The especially unusual thing about this is that the mother is still able to hunt her prey while toting around her unborn children.
After the eggs hatch, the baby spiders will crawl up onto their mother’s back and stay there until they mature enough to live on their own.
3. Dads who help out
Belostomatidae, or The Giant Water Bug, is, in itself, a very strange creature. Also known as Indian Toe Biters or Alligator Ticks these huge guys are famous for having the most painful bite and for attacking and eating things much bigger than themselves, like baby turtles and water snakes.
Why they are listed on this article, however, is not for their ferocious hunting skills, but for their caring parenting abilities, particularly with the males. Water bugs are extremely cautious and caring throughout the entire reproduction process and invest unusual amounts of time into making sure that the eggs hatch safely. Male Water Bugs will actually carry around eggs on the wings until they hatch, continually exposing the eggs to air and biting anything that comes too close.
4. Dangerous Nannies
Treehoppers are another insect to exhibit some strange parenting behaviors. These guys will aggressively protect their eyes. As soon as the eggs hatch, the female will secret a sweet tasting substance called honeydew, which will attract ants. When a colony discovers the secretion, the mother will then completely abandon her young, who also feed on the secretion, into the care of the ants. The ants then serve as the babies’ protectors until they mature and can fend for themselves.
5. Farting Moms
Harlequin Bugs are fierce protectors of their eggs. They will lay clusters of eggs, protected by twigs and leaves and stand guard until they hatch. As part of their defense, unusual bugs have glands that will release a smelly substance warding off potential attackers. When one bug releases their scent it will trigger other scent glands to release the smelly substance from other bugs nearby, making their area extremely unpleasant to be around. These bugs are so famous for their ‘farts’ they are also known as Stink Bugs.
Yup! These bugs are definitely weirdoes! Next time your parents do something unusual, just think of these strange parenting habits, and you’ll feel better in no time!