7 Petrifying Insects That Will Give You Nightmares

Collection of Insects

Source: UC Riverside

From venomous caterpillars to a bizarre scorpion-inspired creature, we’ve compiled the freakiest insects nature has to offer. Be warned—these seven creepy insects are sure to make your skin crawl:

Petrifying Insects: The Botfly

Read this description of the human botfly’s growth cycle, and you’ll know why it made our list of the creepiest insects. The human botfly (Dermatobia hominis) lays its eggs on a mosquito. When the mosquito eventually feeds on a host (ie. you), those botfly eggs hatch. Then, the larva must grow and mature, a process that takes about six to eight weeks, all of which happens beneath the skin. Yes, these creepy insects actually hatch and grow within the body, then pop out through the skin to survive.

While it’s not hard to kill the larvae (one must only cut off their air supply by covering the skin with nail polish or petroleum jelly), after death the larvae must then be extracted from the person’s body. Check out this creepy compilation of people pulling the botfly larvae from the body. Warning: It’s not for the faint of heart.

The Most Fascinatingly Bizarre Footage Of A Tarantula Molting

In order to grow, tarantulas must shed their exoskeletons every one to two years–and even more so when they are younger. Like most humans who are about to undergo a major and often uncomfortable change, before molting tarantulas tend to appear sluggish and refuse food. The process can last anywhere from 45 minutes to over 12 hours. In this video, though, it happens in under five minutes.

10 Pictures of Three-Week-Old Baby Meerkats That Will Make You Say Aww

Meerkats are pretty darn cute. With their tall, slender bodies and expressive faces, these critters are often caught perched on their two hind feet, scanning the savanna for predators. That being said, baby meerkats are even cuter. Photographer Will Burrard-Lucas recently traveled to the Makgadikgadi Pans region of Botswana to snap pictures of the beloved creatures. While there, Burrard-Lucas had the pleasure of capturing various images of a meerkat community that included some three-week-old baby meerkats. The resulting photos are playful, adorable and sure to brighten your day.

As you can see in this short clip, the baby meerkats enjoyed the photoshoot almost as much as Burrard-Lucas did:

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A Happy Pack Of Polar Bears

Polar Bear Family

While they seem somewhat benign here, polar bears are some of the Arctic circle’s most ferocious predators. Fun fact for context’s sake: polar bears’ fur is actually transparent. It only looks white because it reflects visible light. Their skin is actually black.

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