insects

Fighter discovers Japanese giant hornet in his apartment, hilarity ensues 【Video】

Fighter discovers Japanese giant hornet in his apartment, hilarity ensues 【Video】

When people talk about Japan, they usually talk about its beautiful landscapes, rich culture, and delicious food. They talk about the cherry blossom in spring, the soft, powder snow in winter, the deep red autumn leaves, and the summers that, while swelteringly hot, go perfectly with a big glass of cold Japanese beer.

What they don’t talk about are the bugs.

Although Japan has nothing on “Don’t Touch That, It’ll Probably Kill You” Australia, it nevertheless has its fair share of creepy-crawlies, and the oosuzumebachi, or Japanese Giant Hornet is perhaps the worst of the bunch. It’s still only April, but it would seem that the Japanese branch of Satan’s striped servants are already out and about, and getting into people’s apartments, no less…

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New species of mayfly discovered in Fukushima that can never get their prescription glasses

New species of mayfly discovered in Fukushima that can never get their prescription glasses

On 2 March this year, a research group from Fukushima University will present the results of their study in which they believe to have found a new species of mayfly. This particular insect was found in a remote swamp near Lake Hibara. This new species is unique in that rather than living from a day to a week like related mayflies, this particular one has a life span of only an hour.

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Chinese man wakes with centipede in his ear: hilarity does not ensue

Chinese man wakes with centipede in his ear: hilarity does not ensue

We’ve probably all had itty-bitty insects fly into our mouths or eyes or even up our noses at one point in time. Whether it’s a mosquito zipping down your throat as you go for a jog or a dive-bombing gnat attacking your eyeball with laser precision, it’s definitely not pleasant. Though it rarely amounts to anything more than a minor annoyance.

For one Chinese man, though, this “minor annoyance” was more like hellish torture. Read More

Unusual Cuisine: Deep-Fried Caterpillars “Make a Wonderful Beer Snack”

Unusual Cuisine: Deep-Fried Caterpillars “Make a Wonderful Beer Snack”

Those of you who abhor the very idea of eating food that’s been anywhere near a creepy-crawly may wish to look away now.

Here at RocketNews24 we like to pride ourselves on our willingness to take up unusual food challenges. If we’re not baking Big Mac bread or gorging on bacon, we’re fighting our way through a kilo of curry and rice for your enjoyment. So as soon as word reached Rocket Towers that a nearby restaurant was serving up genuine insect cuisine, our reporter Mr Sato immediately sprang into action and boarded a train to Takadanobaba.

Who’d have thought that deep-fried imomushi (hairless caterpillars or hornworms) could be so delicious that they could bring smiles to our reporter’s face?

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Tokyo Bug Eating Club to Hold Festival Tomorrow, Guess What’s on the Menu?

Tokyo Bug Eating Club to Hold Festival Tomorrow, Guess What’s on the Menu?

As icky as it sounds to many of us brought up in Western cultures, the human consumption of insects is common in many parts of the world.

Most Japanese people are on the same page as the rest of the developed world in thinking of bugs as unappetizing—not to mention creepy, gross, and/or scary— little creatures that have no place in the home, and especially not on the dinner plate.

However, there are some rural regions of Japan where insects are are a local delicacy, and have been so for centuries. In Nagano, the prefecture this writer calls home, you can walk into any supermarket and expect to find plastic packs of grasshopper (inago) or stonefly larva (suzumushi) boiled in soy sauce, and sometimes even read-to-eat packs of boiled wasp larva mixed in with rice (hachinoko-gohan).

In the cities, eating bugs is still taboo, and even in rural areas insect cuisine is now considered fringe cuisine, especially among the younger generations.  But in Tokyo, there is a group of people who believe that bugs just need to be given a chance, which is why they are hosting what is now the 4th annual Tokyo Insect Eating Festival (Tokyo Mushikui Festival) on November 23.

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Tokyo Board of Education to Offer “Insect Touching Classes” to Teachers Who Are Afraid of Bugs

Tokyo Board of Education to Offer “Insect Touching Classes” to Teachers Who Are Afraid of Bugs

Earlier this week, we ran an article featuring the most hated insects in Japan.  This article revealed that 40.4% of those surveyed dislike all bugs, no matter what kind.

In addition, an article from Karapaia discloses that an overwhelming amount of teachers in Tokyo admit they are afraid of insects.  In order to encourage these teachers to successfully incorporate nature observation and science experiments in the classroom, the Tokyo Municipal Board of Education will begin offering lectures featuring simple science experiments and animal care classes next spring, including a lecture on how to touch insects.  These classes will be held at universities and zoos and are aimed at elementary school teachers who have limited knowledge in the field of science.

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Poll Reveals 60% of Japanese Hate Insects, but What is the Most Despised?

Poll Reveals 60% of Japanese Hate Insects, but What is the Most Despised?

My Navi News, a Japanese news website, polled 1000 of their members to find out just how many people dislike creepy-crawlies. A whopping 63.1% said they can’t stand the little guys.  Take a look at their reasons why and find out Japan’s most hated bug.

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Cockroaches Ending 2012 Season with a Bang, Stories of our Black Buddies Coming Fast and Furious

Cockroaches Ending 2012 Season with a Bang, Stories of our Black Buddies Coming Fast and Furious

As the summer cools back down to a comfortable autumn, the cockroach index has slid to a 1 across much of Japan. But before they go to sleep in many parts of the world, it looks like our little black friends are squirming their way into the headlines to give us something to remember them by.

We’ve all probably heard the tale of Edward Archbold who mysteriously died after winning a cockroach eating contest in the USA.  However, in China, roaches making quite a stir – by getting stirred into the food.

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Annoyed by Buzzing Mosquitoes? A Smartphone App May Be the Answer to Your Problem

Annoyed by Buzzing Mosquitoes? A Smartphone App May Be the Answer to Your Problem

We’ve introduced some unique smartphone apps in one of our previous posts, but here’s one more unique app that’s caught our attention and may even be useful, if you believe what the developers say. If you’ve ever been annoyed by mosquitoes in the outdoors, and I believe most of us have at one time or another, then the Mosquito Buster app may be the solution to your pest problem. Yes, those small, buzzing blood-suckers can really be a pain, can’t they? But can a smartphone app really help you avoid mosquitoes? Well, the people at TABROID, a Japanese site that focuses on Android-related news and information, have apparently tested the app out in the field to see if it actually works. Read More

Molted Insect Skins Are so in This Summer: Japanese Entertainer Shokotan Sports Exotic Headwear

Molted Insect Skins Are so in This Summer: Japanese Entertainer Shokotan Sports Exotic Headwear

TV personality, outspoken otaku, avid cosplayer, diligent blogger: Japanese celebrity Shoko Nakagawa, or Shokotan, as she is lovingly referred to by fans, is known for many things. Normality is not one of them.

Exhibit A: On August 11, the quirky entertainer posted a series of pictures to her blog of herself covered in molted insect shells.

We think that should be sufficient evidence.

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Japanese Research Proves Stinkbugs Can Pass Out From Their Own Stink (Video)

Japanese Research Proves Stinkbugs Can Pass Out From Their Own Stink (Video)

Japan is home to a number of terrifying insects, such as the mukade, a giant venmous centipede with a sting that can be fatal to children and the elderly, or the suzumebachi (Asian Giant Hornet), which actually kills a handful of people every year.

But perhaps no insect in Japan is feared more than the kamemushi, commonly referred to in English as the stinkbug. While you can easily drop centipedes and hornets with a good dose of pesticide or a well-timed smack of the shoe, it is in death that kamemushi is feared the most.

You see, when you kill a stinkbug, it stinks. It stinks a lot, which is why most Japanese people gently pick them up with a tissue and throw them outside or roll them up in tape so they can’t move and dispose of them in the trash.

Recently, a team of amateur Japanese “researchers” decided to make that unholy stink of the stinkbug the subject of their latest study, which asks the question: “Can kamemushi be knocked unconscious by the smell of their own fart?

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Shinjuku restaurant serves fried scorpion, “Crispy and more delicious than you can imagine”

Shinjuku restaurant serves fried scorpion, “Crispy and more delicious than you can imagine”

Believe it or not, your reporter (Chie Nomura, pictured above & below) has always had a taste for insect cuisine and it’s been a long-held dream of mine to try scorpion. After all, while you sometimes see variety shows with some talent scowling as he reluctantly lowers a giant black scorpion into his mouth, here in Japan, they’re not the kind of bugs we can try everyday.

Well, after doing some searching, I found a Chinese restaurant in Shinjuku, Tokyo that serves scorpion! Who knew that the key to realizing my long-cherished dream was so close at hand!

I wasted no time in scuttling on over to try the dish myself!

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