A Nice Big Stick Insect on the 4th floor of the Maths Building at Monash University

Back to the main Stick Insect page.
Back to the main First Principles site for the world's longest Sliiiiiiiiiinky and many other show-and-tell items.


This is the first of 11 video capture images Robert A. Goler sent me of his distinguished visitor!  The other then are below his email:

G'Day Robin

I had my first encounter with a stick insect today (er yesterday).  Of
all places it was in the 4th floor toilets in the maths building here
where I work!

I took some video of it and have attached some of the captures from it.
It was at least 6 inches long, and it's camouflage isn't quite as
effective when it's hanging on a black wall.  I gave it a little tap and
it gently swayed back and forth.  I took it out of the toilets and showed
it to some of the female staff, much to their displeasure :-)  I actually
joked about keeping it as a pet, but I put it outside which I thought
would be best.  For reference, the width of that magazine box that the
walking stick is on is 11cm.  In hindsight, a brown box was perhaps the
worst colour choice I could've made.

I gather that it must have come in to get out of the cold 18 degree C
daytime temperatures.  I'm wondering though how it could make it up to the
4th floor.  It doesn't seem to have wings for flight, and I thought it may
be a bit risky for it to climb the outside of the building in terms of
exposure to predators (I guess birds would go after it).  And I don't
think it's coordinated enough to use the lifts :-)

I have never seen anything like it before first hand!

I found it so mesmerising just watching the way it was moving around on
that box with those huge legs.

On the insect front again, on my recent trip to Darwin I caught a close up
of a praying mantis cleaning itself (I think) much like a cat does.  You
can find the captures here at the bottom of the page:


It may be a bit slow to load up as there is quite a bit on the page.  My
real interest is in clouds and storms, but I had time to kill during work,
hence the insects pics.  Day 7 (link at the bottom of page) has a 7cm
long grass hopper, and a close up of a smaller grass hopper.


Robert A. Goler       

School of Mathematical Sciences
Monash University
Clayton, Vic 3800


1        2

3        4

7        9

11        12

13        14

Robert describes what I found so fascinating about my Distinguished Guest - not just its size, but a grace and a kind of patience and coordination which made a big impression on me.

Actually, I think it did use the lift.  

Back to the main Stick Insect page.