A List of 12 Nasty and Cool Bugs For Your Enjoyment

(Last Updated On: May 13, 2020)
Nasty and Cool Bugs
File Burrowing Cockroaches under “Nasty, but Cool Bugs.”

We’re not sure if you like critters or not, but we’ve definitely seen and disliked our fair share. From bugs that have almost superhero-esque powers, to the ones that simply look too big to crush properly. We’re going to lump all arachnids and similar creatures together into this post, and let’s just not deal with the technicalities. It’s about the vibe–it’s not that we hate these little guys, it’s just that we don’t like them and they’re terrible. But some of these critters are actually quite cool too. So here are a handful of nasty and cool bugs for your enjoyment (or horror). 

You can read about the technicalities here on the blog

Further Reading: The Worst Plants | 8 Plants You Want to Avoid at All Costs

A List of 12 Nasty and Cool Bugs

1. The Ironclad Beetle

These beetles actually look… Rather neat. Their name is cool too, we imagine they’re the insect equivalent of some crusader telling you to not expect the Spanish Inquisition. 

Luckily they don’t pursue your flesh or whatever. They just mind their own business eating fungus. We’re really letting you guys off easy with our first entry.

But why did they even make the list then? Well they’re dang near indestructible. Their exoskeletons are said to be the hardest around, and you can’t even jam an insect pin through them when you want to display dead ones in a case. Most people use a drill.

You can’t squash these guys or even hit them with a car either. So uh… Just be glad they haven’t taken to flesh.

2. Wasps

We’ve written about wasps before, but that doesn’t make them any less nasty.

From decapitating our honeybee friends and decimating their colonies to literally being Ridley Scott’s Alien, wasps are just… Not a very fun time.

If you thought we were kidding, no, some wasps don’t have stingers and instead inject their eggs into still-living prey. Wherein the eggs hatch and their living prey ends up no longer living. 

Further Reading: Wasp Facts | Why You Should Fear Wasps and Hornets

There’s also the super massive tarantula hawk, whose sting is one of the most painful out here. It’ll mess you up.

Oh also there’s recorded evidence of a decapitated wasp picking up its own head and flying off. No really, here’s the gif.

3. Mosquitoes

Honestly, you knew the mosquito would make the list. Prime vector for malaria, this makes mosquitoes a large part of the morbid “one child dies from malaria every 2 minutes” statistic. 

Also we could kill all of them and there’s a pretty good chance the world would be fine. No animal relies solely on mosquitoes, and would continue on eating other things from their diet.

4. The Camel Spider

This is probably the first one that makes non-bug-lovers feel… Uneasy. Just to look at. Six inches long and 2 ounces in weight, they’re apparently as large as a teacup (if not larger). It’s a weird scale, but hey, it’s enough to make one not like them.

They don’t have any venom and stuff of the sort, so they’re not going to be killing you anytime soon. But their jaws are powerful, and really big in relation to their size. 

Camel spiders also eat by “sawing” their jaws back and forth and slowly grinding their prey to be eaten. 

5. The Hummingbird Hawk-Moth

Alright, retreating back to less nasty fellows for a palate cleanser, we have hummingbird moths. Not all of them look particularly cute, but they are quite majestic if you appreciate nature. They’re named so because they feed in a very similar way to the hummingbird.

They’re even seen as a good omen, even as recently as WWII. No really, they’re said to have flown through the English Channel on D-Day.

6. The Atlas Moth

Unfortunately for their namesake, the atlas moths don’t suffer a very nice fate in adulthood. It’s not the moth that’s nasty, rather their life cycle

If you like insect wings, the atlas moth’s red wings can be a sight to behold. Which… Is also their undoing.

Before becoming moths, their larva will gorge themselves as much as possible. They’re trying to conserve energy, because once they reach their final moth form, the atlas moth doesn’t have a mouth.

Because of this, they have to conserve their energy and fly as little as possible. Once they mate, their purpose is fulfilled and they starve to death. 

Quite disturbing, really. 

7 and 8. Giant Wetas and Burrowing Cockroaches

They’re not the same at all, but they make the list for the same reason.

They’re really big. Like up to 35 grams big. That’s it we don’t like them.

If you wanted to dislike them more, the giant weta has clocked in at 70 grams before. That’s like a tennis ball as one bug. That’ll also be a no from us, chief.

9. The Hercules Beetle

Can we talk about cool bugs now? Because the hercules beetle is cool. Named for Hercules himself, the hercules beetle comes into the ring up to 3.3 inches in length. Their massive horns can bring them up to 7 inches.

They’re not just named after Hercules because they look cool (beetles are pretty chill), they can reportedly lift something like 850 times their own body weight. 

That’s like lifting 30 cars for the average person.

10. The Golden Tortoise Beetle

The golden tortoise beetle isn’t exactly nasty, they’re just really cool with a shiny gold shell and a transparent shell over it. Also they can turn red.

11. House Centipedes

Alright, back to nasty. You’ve probably seen images of the house centipede before, and they look even more disturbing in that low-resolution overly compressed image style pictures of bugs normally get. Like all centipedes, the house centipede has a lot of legs. Legs that are really long, and are also used to envenom their prey. 

Luckily they feed on household pests, like roaches, bedbugs, and termites. If you don’t like bugs though, you might almost prefer bedbugs. 

Bedbugs are terrible and you probably wouldn’t prefer them over a house centipede. 

But if you don’t feel uneasy around bugs, perhaps this fact will forever ruin the house centipede. They can spontaneously detach their legs when they become trapped. 

Hey, house centipede. Maybe if your legs are so long they get stuck in everything all the time, you should have shorter legs. 

We’re going to go lie down now.

12. Decoy Building Spiders

It seems that the decoy building spider doesn’t really have a formal name yet, despite being discovered almost 8 years ago in the Amazon. 

They’ve since been classified as a subtype of the cyclosa spider, otherwise known as “orb weaving” spiders.

These guys are… Smart. They use debris and food leftovers to make a bigger spider in the middle of their webs, which they use to hide in. It doesn’t seem like we really know why they do this, just that they do. Heck, they’re smart enough to use their recently molted shells as part of their decoys!

We weren’t sure whether or not they were nasty or chill, but we’ve tentatively decided on nasty. It’s cool that a spider can make a decoy and all that. But… That also means there exists a spider smart enough to know what it looks like. If you don’t like spiders, the implications of there being a hyper intelligent one out there is the worst. 

You’ve seen a lot of bugs today, so why not identify them here?

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About Kyler 560 Articles
Kyler is a content writer at Sporcle living in Seattle, and has just finished his undergraduate at the University of Washington. He's been writing for Sporcle since 2019 and has accumulated so much random, general knowledge he'd rather not think about it. Most of his free time is spent drinking black coffee like water.