Here at EcoCare Pest Control, we get a lot of questions about insects and other pests. Some of them are very common, and you can read about them in our FAQ.

But some of them are just downright weird. And funny.

Because these aren’t your usual everyday questions, we thought it’d be fun to devote some time to answer some of the more off-the-wall questions we get from time to time. Here goes!

Do flies throw up every time they eat?

Yes! There are more than 110,000 species of flies in the world. Not one of them has teeth. For them to eat, they spit out a digestive fluid that partially dissolves whatever they’ve landed on. They then use their straw-like mouth to slurp it up. Tasty, right?

Is it true that bees can’t fly during an eclipse?

This is true, and it’s a weird one, for sure. Interestingly, this is a relatively recent discovery, dating back only to the 2017 solar eclipse. An ecologist, a team of researchers, and about 100 elementary school kids experimented using a set of small microphones that were suspended among some flowers. The microphones recorded the bees’ buzzing through every stage of the eclipse. They found that the bees stopped buzzing entirely during the totality when the moon completely hid the sun.

The reason for this is entirely logical: Bees are only active when the sun’s out, and the eclipse was dark enough to convince them that it was nighttime.

Do some insects have gears?

This is shockingly true. Scientists found that the planthopper resembles mechanical gears in its legs, enabling it to hop with significant force for its size. The bugs are extremely tiny, only a couple of millimeters long, thus requiring a high-powered microscope to discover them.

Are daddy longlegs spiders?

Despite their appearance, the daddy longlegs isn’t truly a spider. They’re Opiliones, an order of arachnids. “Wait a minute,” you might be saying. “Aren’t arachnids spiders?” While all spiders are arachnids, not all arachnids are spiders. For example, scorpions are arachnids, but they’re not spiders.

Daddy longlegs doesn’t produce any webbing, but the real difference is in their physiology. Daddy longlegs has one single body that houses their head, thorax, and abdomen, whereas spiders have these units separated.

Can insects hear?

In a sense, yes. Many insects have organs that can detect vibrations. And what is sound? It’s a vibration in the air that causes the bones in our ears to vibrate.

Interestingly, not all insects have ears. And the ones that do have them in what we might consider unusual places. For example, the katydid has ears on its legs and can detect sounds between 5,000 to 50,000 hertz (humans, by the way, can detect sounds between 20 and 20,000 hertz).

Other insects use tiny hairs to sense vibrations, while others use their antennae.

Ask the Entomologist!

Do you have a weird question about insects? Go ahead and Ask the Entomologist!