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What are some walking sticks facts?

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Quick Answer

Walking sticks are in the same family as leaf insects, can regenerate their limbs, can reproduce without the need for a partner, and can play dead when threatened. There are more than 3,000 known species of stick insects on earth, and most of them live in the tropics and subtropics. Stick insects also hold the record for world's longest insect with the Chan's megastick measuring 22 inches with legs outstretched.

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If a predator such as a bird grabs a stick insect's leg, the insect uses a special muscle to break off the leg from the weak joint so it can escape. The leg grows back during the next moult, and some adult insects may force a moult for this purpose. When a male stick insect mates with a female, approximately half of the offspring are male, but female stick insects can reproduce without a male, resulting in all-female offspring.

When threatened, stick insects may feign death, dropping to the ground and becoming still, and a North American species protects itself by emitting a foul-smelling liquid. Stick insects make up the order Phasmida along with the equally well-camouflaged leaf insects, but many of the 3,000 known species are susceptible to pesticides and habitat destruction.

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