YES! Just what Reeko likes to see – a kid interested in learning! Check back here every week to see what the new Science Word of the Day is. Just think, after a year of this you’ll be a genius! This science word for today is: “Insects”.
Insects are a class of animal that have an exoskeleton, three pairs of jointed legs, compound eyes, and two antennae. Most hatch from eggs. They can move by walking, flying, or even swimming. There are over 900,000 species of insects throughout the world.
Some interesting insect facts:
- Grasshoppers have ears on their front legs.
- Only three types of animals fight their battles in organized formations – people, crows, and ants.
- Mosquito have killed more human beings than all the wars in history. They do this by transmitting diseases such as malaria or West Nile virus.
- Flies can taste food with their feet and always jump backwards just before flight (so aim the flyswatter slightly behind the fly).
- Butterflies also taste food with their feet.
- Some wasps sleep while hanging by their teeth.
- An ant is capable of lifting over 50 times its weight. This is equivalent to a human being lifting 10,000 pounds (or the weight of a car).
- A flea can jump about two hundred times the length of their body, which is about thirteen inches. This is the equivalent to a six foot tall human jumping nine hundred feet.
- A cockroach can live nine days without eating. This is also the same amount of time that the body of a cockroach can live after its head has been cut off before it eventually dies from starvation.
- Only male crickets can chirp and will chirp faster in warm weather than cool. In fact, you can determine the temperature by counting the number of chirps in fifteen seconds and adding it to 37.
- The average bed contains between two million to six million dust mites. There are more insects in one square mile of earth that there are human beings on the entire planet.
Even stranger, the average person consumes over 400 insects every year and they never even know it. Most insects consumed, including spiders, and accidentally swallowed while the person is asleep but others are consumed in the food we eat. In fact, The Department of Health and Human Services has set standards regarding how many insect parts are food can contain, called the Food Defect Action Levels. Chocolate can have up to eight insect fragments per hundred grams, while peanut butter can have only sixty fragments. Meanwhile, wheat flour can have 150 fragments per hundred grams and paprika can have 300 fragments.