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This Rare Stick Insect Is Among the Last of Its Kind


This is the black beauty stick insect, a rare species only found in a tiny 12-acre area high in the mountains of northern Peru. Only discovered in 2005, not much is known about these insects, but they are believed to be most active at night when their deep black coloration keeps them hidden from predators. They are also armed with a gland at the rear of their heads which, when threatened, can spray a corrosive, strong-smelling substance. Because their natural habitat is so small, their survival is precarious—thankfully, captive breeding efforts may bring these insects back from the brink.

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This story is a part of our Planet Earth series. From mammals to insects and birds to reptiles, we share this great big world with all manner of creatures, large and small. Come with us to faraway places as we explore our great big planet and meet some of its wildest inhabitants. 

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