A stick or leaf-shaped phasmid (Phasmida) is a type of insect that belongs to a group of ghosts. It includes more than 3,000 species that inhabit many areas, including Russia, the United States and Australia, but most live in the tropics. As the name suggests, the insect reminds of twigs, sticks or leaves, among which it lives, which gives him one of the most effective disguises on earth.
Some stickers, often called “walking stick”, can vary greatly in size, depending on the species and habitat. The tiniest are Timema cristinae from North America, which grow to 11.6 mm in length. The largest stick – Phobaeticus kirbyi lives on Borneo and reaches 32.8 cm! Pulling out its paws, this giant reaches a length of 50-55 cm, which makes it one of the longest insects in the world.
The color of the leaves is protective, usually green or brown, although in some species there is a bright color and even a striped color. They can become lighter or darker depending on the lighting. The degree of brightness changes due to the expansion or narrowing of the pigment, which is in the upper layer of the chitinous cover.
Usually, males are slightly smaller than females. On a small spherical head there are round eyes, filiform antennae, in front there is a mouth gnawing apparatus. Antennae may be of different lengths: less than the size of the head or longer than the whole body. Thin, long legs are equipped with suckers between the claws.