We had a very strange guest at Adobe Nido this week. A Walking Stick.
We don’t see this type of insect around here that often, and I have never seen a walking stick like this one. Most that I’ve encountered actually looked like twigs, and this one really resembles a seed head of a native grass.
It took up residency on the front screen door for at least 3 days, and it may have been there longer and gone unnoticed. It was fairly small, (about 2″ long). To give some perspective, the nail shown in the photo is actually a tack that has an 1/8″ head. The walking stick seed head was laying pretty flat when I found it, like had blown up against the screen and stuck, but when touched it stood up tall and alert, (well as tall and alert as this kind of insect can manage).
The scientific name for this creature is Phasmatodea, which comes from the Greek word, phasma, meaning apparition or phantom. No wonder, as these creatures are really hard to spot even when they’re right in front of you. I can’t even tell which end is which.
I am not going to bore you with all the details, so if you’d like more info on walking stick bugs, go to Wikipedia’s page about them. I also did a Google search on “walking sick bug”, and was amazed by the images I found…but none really looked like my phantom! Not one.
I see some wierd things in Albuquerque!
Sarah Dolk, Adobe Nido Bed & Breakfast
Expert on Destination Albuquerque and Central New Mexico!