Meet the strongman of the insect world
Thursday 22 June 2006
London Zoo showcases its giant Hercules beetles during national Insect Week.
Horned beetles that are believed to be the strongest animals on earth are the latest additions to London Zoo for national Insect Week.
Hercules beetles (Dynastes hercules) are one of the largest beetles in the world – growing to around 5” long – and will feature as part of a daily Mega Bugs talk during the summer.
Native to the rainforests of central and south America, they are also known as rhinoceros beetles because males have a horn that can equal or exceed their own body in length. They use these horns primarily in combat with each other.
The endangered Hercules beetle is said to be the strongest animal in the world for its size, able to carry 850 times its own body weight.
The amazing insects are now on display in London Zoo’s Biodiversity Underpinning Global Survival (BUGS) exhibit.
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Notes to editors
There will be an opportunity to take close-up photos of the Hercules beetles behind the scenes at London Zoo.
London Zoo’s astonishing BUGS exhibition opened to visitors in April 1999.
Housed in the Millenium Conservation Centre at London Zoo, BUGS tells the story of biodiversity – the term used to describe the variety of life on Earth.
Mega Bugs talks will happen at 2pm each day in the BUGS exhibit during the summer period.
Founded in 1826, the Zoological Society of London (ZSL) is an international scientific, conservation and educational charity: our key role is the conservation of animals and their habitats. ZSL runs London Zoo and Whipsnade Wild Animal Park, carries out scientific research in the Institute of Zoology and is actively involved in field conservation in other countries worldwide. For further information please visit www.zsl.org.
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