A native of New Zealand
, though the largest version Giant Weta
lives on Little Barrier Island
World renowned as the Heaviest Insect In The World, the largest Weta recorded was a female that weighed three times heavier than a mouse, at 71 grams(!). In fact, it is so heavy that it can't jump. It's Maori name is Wetapunga, which means God of Ugly Things.
Latin: Dienacrida heteracantha.
On the upside, the Giant Weta is docile creature that does not kick or bite. To ward off predators, it raises it's spikey back legs.
It often lives under rocks and bush floor debris.
The Gentle Giant of the insect world, it prefers a vegetarian diet.