What is the largest insect on Earth?
That depends on what you mean by “large.” The longest insect is Pharnaciaserritypes, which lives in western Malaysia. These insects get to be 22 inches (56 centimeters) long! They are related to the group of insects called walking sticks. Walking sticks get their name from the fact that they do, indeed, look like sticks with legs. The largest walking sticks can grow to up to 13 inches (33 centimeters) in length. There are approximately 3,000 tropical species of walking sticks, and 10 species that live in North America. One species, Megaphasma dentricus, is the longest insect in the United States, reaching 7 inches (17.7 centimeters) in length. If you are talking about the heaviest insect, then take a look at the giant weta (scientific name Deinacrida heteracantha), an endangered insect that can weigh up to two and a half ounces (71 grams). These insects may look ferocious and scary because of their size, but they are actually harmless. Another insect that is often considered the biggest is the acteon beetle (Megasoma acteon) because it is very bulky looking and can be as big as 3.5 inches (9 centimeters) long by 2 inches (5 centimeters) wide and 1.5 inches (4 centimeters) thick.