stick insect


Definition of stick insect

: any of various usually wingless phasmid insects (especially family Phasmatidae) with a long cylindrical body resembling a stick broadly : phasmid

Examples of stick insect in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Indo-Malaya Size: 50 to 100 mm (2 to 4 inches) long Leaf insects are stick insects that have evolved extremely flattened, irregularly shaped bodies, wings and legs. Meilan Solly, Smithsonian Magazine, "The World’s Most Interesting Insects," 29 Apr. 2020 But tree lobsters—which include New Guinea’s thorny devil (Eurycantha calcarata) and the Lord Howe Island stick insect (Dryococelus australis)—are a glaring exception. Elizabeth Pennisi, Science | AAAS, "Thorny devils grow giant legs to pin rivals," 25 June 2019 Without native predators, the stick insect population could surge. John Pickrell, Science | AAAS, "Mass rodent poisoning on this remote Australian island could bring back giant stick insect," 5 June 2019 But a study of stick insects found that secreting liquid from foot pads has nothing to do with, well, sticking. Gemma Tarlach, Discover Magazine, "20 Things You Didn't Know About ... Feet," 8 May 2019 But scientists in Japan noticed that despite their camouflage, stick insects became bird food quite frequently. Joanna Klein, New York Times, "Stick Insects Are Easy Bird Food, and That Might Help Them Reproduce," 5 June 2018 As Kaplan reports, plant seeds and stick insect eggs have some conspicuous similarities. Julissa Treviño, Smithsonian, "Do Mama Stick Insects Get Eaten to Transport Their Eggs?," 30 May 2018 Found in eastern Asia, bulbuls are known predators of stick insects in Japan. Julissa Treviño, Smithsonian, "Do Mama Stick Insects Get Eaten to Transport Their Eggs?," 30 May 2018 Take the saga of the Lord Howe Island stick insect. Matt Simon, WIRED, "The 6-Foot Chinese Giant Salamander Is in Serious Trouble," 21 May 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'stick insect.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of stick insect

1826, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for stick insect

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The first known use of stick insect was in 1826

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Cite this Entry

“Stick insect.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 3 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for stick insect

stick insect


English Language Learners Definition of stick insect

: an insect with a long, thin body that looks like a stick

stick insect


Kids Definition of stick insect

: a wingless long-legged insect that has a long body resembling a stick

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