Golden-eyed stick insect
The picky eater
The golden-eyed stick insect lives in a very small area of forest in
Peru. Since its discovery in 2004 it has become one of the most popular stick insects for collectors and enthusiasts thanks to its striking colouration. Both sexes have the characteristic yellow eyes, as well as red mouthparts and vestigial wings. As is usual among stick insects, females are considerably larger than males.
A velvety body covered in tiny bristles gives the species its alternate common name: the black beauty stick insect. It’s not yet known what function the bristles (setae) perform, but they could help with sensing the environment or gripping onto branches and leaves. This stick insect is selective when it comes to food, feeding on the leaves of just one species of pepper tree in the wild.
While most golden-eyed stick insects have red wings and mouthparts, a less common pink morph exists with pale pink wings and yellow mouthparts. GolDen-eyeD stick insect
territory Cordillera del Cóndor, northern Peru Diet Pepper tree leaves
lifespan 1–2 years in captivity
adult weight Unknown conservation status