The Biggest Bug in the World Debate.

In the past few days, there has been a sting of news releases about the World’s Biggest Bug, all started by this:

largest bug in the world -Giant Weta
Picture: Mark Moffett/Minden Pictures/Solent

This extremely rare and endangered insect was found by Mark Moffett. It took him 2 days to find this Giant Weta. She was found on Little Barrier Island, in New Zealand. They are no longer on the main land as they were cleared out by rats brought in by the Europeans. Mark, a bug lover from Colorado, was excited to find this rare cricket-like creature. He was even more honored when it was declared the Largest Insect on Record, according to weight. The wing span is 7 inches.

That is one HUGE bug, but is it the worlds Largest?

Here are some other contenders for the “World’s Largest Bug Award”

Goliath Beetle:

Golaith Beetle

The Goliath Beetle is often considered the largest bug on earth. It’s wings span reaches up to 10 inches. It actually sounds like a small toy helicopter in flight. And yes you can buy the Goliath Beetle framed like the picture above for $250.

Giant Moths:

Photo by Bulwark Exterminating Technician
Photo by Bulwark Exterminating Technician

Moths can be very large as well. From the White Witch Moth to the Atlas Moth, these mammoth moths have wing spans of up to 12 inches. This particular moth was photographed in Tulsa, OK by Bulwark Exterminating. It’s not quite the size of the mammoth moths, but it looked good on film.

Queen Alexandra’s Birdwing:

Wikipedia Author – Mark Pellegrini (Raul654)

The Queen Alexandra Birdwing is the largest butterfly in the world. The female’s wing span reaches just over 12 inches at 12.2. Interesting to note that this is yet another kingdom wherein the females rule, well at least based on size. It’s actually common for female insects to be larger than their male counterparts.

Goliath Bird Eating Tarantula

English: Theraphosa blondi - Goliath birdeater...

Tthe largest of the Arachnid family is the Theraphosa leblondi, known as the Bird Eating Tarantula. Yes it really does munch down a few birds and small rodents of unusual size. On record this spider is just over 11 inches, but others believe they grow to be 12 inches. But no need to fear, they are pretty harmless to humans. Go ahead and pick one up, if you dare.

Giant Walking Stick Insect:

If you are measuring on pure length then the Giant Walking Stick takes the cake. It can grow up to 20 inches.

So what of this Record Breaking Bug?

The claim remains that this Giant Weta is the largest on record by weight. At 71 grams (2.5 oz) they beat out all of their winged friends… UNLESS you believe wikipedia which states that Goliath Beetles weigh in from 80 to 100 grams. Can someone please put this debate to a close?


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