Photo: Courtesy of Damon Ramsey
BSc.(Zool) Biologist Guide
This order contains some of the most amazing insects of all.
As the common name suggests, these insects often grow to resemble stems, sticks and leaves (above)
The impersonation of vegetation doesn't stop there; the females often drop eggs that look like little seeds.
Because of their cryptic habits, adults are usually only noticed when they are seen away from their natural habitat.
Some of the tropical forms grow to enormous sizes.
One of the most interesting and well-known insects in the Daintree region is in this group - the 'Peppermint Stick Insect' or Megacrania batesii (below).
This gorgeous animal is found only on Pandanus plants in coastal swampy forest.
They can often be detected by the chewed leaves of the Pandanus plants in which they feed, and the large amount of insect poo they leave.
They are usually slender animals that can be different shades of green, to almost blue.
Their common name derives from the fact that they squirt a scent of peppermint when disturbed, but don't lean in too close to smell them, or they may squirt you in the eye.
Script and Photo: Courtesy of Damon Ramsey BSc.(Zool) Biologist Guide