Out of This World! 4 Alien-like Insects You Should Know About

In an age where space exploration is becoming widespread, it can be quite easy to forget we are also surrounded by wonders here on Earth. Nature is home to millions of different species that contribute to the overall ecosystem. Of course, some of these aren’t commonly seen in your ordinary neighborhood—it would actually be surprising if you did see one in your backyard! You just might call termite control as they look so bizarre, you would think they’re rogue aliens who entered Earth. To clear things up, let’s check out some of nature’s most obscure and strangest insects.

Pale Tussock


The Pale Tussock (Dasychira pudibunda) is commonly found in Denmark and parts of Wales and England. What makes is special are the caterpillars, who are covered in bright green and yellow hairs with black bands on each segment to protect them from birds and other predators. They are frequently found in hop fields because part of their diet are hop leaves, giving them the name “hop dogs”. They also feed on oak, lime, and birch.

Atlas Moth


The only moth that can rival the beauty of butterflies, the Atlas Moth (Attacus atlas) is the largest in the world, with a wing span of up to 12 inches and a surface area of 62 square inches. Atlas moths are commonly found in Southeast Asia where in some parts, the silk from their cocoons, known as fagara, is used to make purses.

There are several theories on how its grandeur name came about. First, the patterns on its wings are so distinct that “Atlas” might refer to the map that uses bold lines to represent land formations. Secondly, it might reference Greek mythology’s Atlas, a Titan who the God Zeus condemned to carry the world on it shoulders.  More likely than not, it may be because of the moth’s largeness rather than carrying some sort of moth “burden” the world isn’t aware of. A third reference comes from China as its Cantonese name translates to “snake’s head moth”, referring to the tips of its wings that look like the head of a snake.

Macleay’s Spectre

Macleay’s Spectre on a stickp>

If you’ve seen Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, you might recognize them in one of the cave scenes. Also known as Giant Prickly Stick Insect (<em< span=””>>Extatosoma tiaratum), Macleay’s Spectre is a large stick insect that can be found in Australia and New Guinea. Their odd bulky, brown, cactus-like body with its small spines helps them blend into their surroundings.&nbsp;The Giant Prickly Stick Insects are nocturnal, and will only move at night. They have an amazing defence strategy—when threatened, they will mimic a scorpion and curl up their tail.</em<>

Brazilian Treehopper


The Brazilian Treehopper (Bocydium globulare) may very well be what an insect would look like if any of our kids get to design an insect. It has four hairy balls, called a headgear, extending above their head with a tiny body to match.

No one knows what the headgear is for. One theory is that it might be for sexual selection, but males are supposedly the only ones that should have them. In the case of the Brazillian treehopper, both sexes have it. Another theory suggests that it might be for protection against predators. But upon closer inspection, one can see bristles covering the bulbs; and so another theory says that it might be for tactile sensing. This isn’t even the strangest looking treehopper in existence. There are numerous treehoppers donning different kinds of head ornament.

These are some of nature’s less talked about insects and like all species who are in danger of facing extinction, we must also work to protect the littlest of nature’s workers. Spotted any out-of-this-world insects lately? Hit us up on the comments below!

“It’s Raining Insects!” Pests that Come Out During the Rainy Season


The rainy season has arrived and most of us are looking forward to cool and comfortable days and nights. While we stay inside our homes to keep ourselves dry, some insects are going back to business. You might not know it, but some of them are pests that are taking their time in destroying your valuables and your home! This means it is time to call the pest and termite control guys to solve this problem. Good thing there’s Topbest to do this service for you.

Here are some of the pests known to be active during the rainy season—just make sure not to let them cuddle with you during those cold nights!



The Palo Verde Root Borer (Derobrachus geminatus) is a type of a long-horn beetle in Southwestern America and Northern Mexico. They are brown or black in color and have wings. Though they come out in the summer to mate, these pests can also feed during the rainy season and can go for a month just by using their bodily reserves.



The Tarantula Hawk Wasp (Pepsini Sp.) is considered to be one of nature’s most creative predators. It is a type of spider wasp that hunts tarantulas by capturing, stinging, and eventually paralyzing its prey. Weird as it may sound, this is actually a means of reproduction for these insects. After the spider has been killed, a female tarantula hawk wasp will carefully make a hole in the spider’s abdomen so as not to damage the internal organs. She will then lay a single egg in the spider’s abdomen and cover up the hole. When the larva hatches, it will feed on the spider’s insides but avoid the vital organs to keep the spider alive for as long as possible. The larva will then pupate and will leave the tarantula’s body—then the cycle begins again.


The Tarantula Hawk wasp stings and though these stings are powerful, these insects won’t do so unless they are provoked.





Rain beetles (Plecomidae sp.) spend most of their lives underground. They come out only during the winter or when it’s rainy, hence its name. Their abdomens are hairy while their backs are smooth and glossy. These critters can be black or reddish brown in color. The rain beetle feeds on plant roots deep beneath the ground, and loves to fly around when it is raining.



Don’t be fooled by its delectable-sounding name! Red velvet mites or rain bugs (Trombiidium sp.) literally look like tiny creatures wrapped with bright red velvet. They are often mistaken for spiders and are parasites to other insects such as grasshoppers during their early stages of life. By the time they reach adulthood, they become active predators, eating smaller insects like ants and tinier mites.


The rainy season need not be a season for pests as well. Read up about more rainy day insects so you would at least have an idea if you ever encounter them. Remember, prevention is always better than cure, so it’s strongly advisable to keep an eye out for these critters before they affect you and your home!