- The Animal Encyclopedia for Kids

Funny Animal Names That Really Exist - Insects

Does the 24-hour ant wear a watch? Is the wandering violin mantis musically gifted? Funny animal names from the insect kingdom!

Bullet Ant

The bullet ant is also called 24-hour ant. The sting of this ant is incredibly painful (even to humans!) and only lets up after 24 hours.

Cereal Leaf Beetle

The cereal leaf beetle’s favorite food is the leaves of cereal plants such as oat, barley and wheat.

Clearwing Moth

A moth with clear wings? Wait, does that mean it’s invisible? Not quite! This moth’s wings are see-through but the rest of its body looks normal. This is for camouflage - if you can see through an animal, you won’t spot it at first. You might think it’s a leaf, for example. Here, you’ll find a photo and more information about the “Greta oto” clearwing.

Diving Beetles

We’ve never seen a beetle doing the front crawl. But these beetles can actually swim. They use their back legs like two rudders.

Dung Beetle

The dung beetle is a beetle that rolls dung up into balls that are bigger than its own body. It lays its eggs in these balls and then rolls them along the ground to a suitable place using its two back legs and walking backwards. In Egypt, these bugs were seen as holy animals and a symbol of resurrection and the cycle of the sun.


An earworm describes a song that gets stuck in your head. But an earwig is a little insect. Don’t worry, they don’t get this name because they like to nest in people’s ears. People used to grind these flying insects down to make a powder to treat ear disorders.

Hummingbird Hawk-Moth

This little insect is often mistaken for a hummingbird. No wonder, as these moths have very long, thin probosces and hover like hummingbirds.

Leaf-Cutter Ant

The leaf-cutter ant really does cut leaves into small pieces (so it can move them around more easily). Find out more about leaf-cutter ants in our factsheet!

Small Pine Engraver

The small pine engraver is a bark beetle. When it feeds on trees, it looks like they’ve been engraved. Hence the name.

Wandering Violin Mantis

This mantis doesn’t make music, but the body of the wandering violin mantis really does look a little like a violin.

22-Spot Ladybird

The yellow 22-spot ladybird has 11 spots on each wing. Count them: 22!

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