Getting Wild with the Weta Bug!

By Kid Reporter IRATI EGORHO, age 9

PHOTO: Flickr/MikeLocke
PHOTO: Flickr/MikeLocke

Wetas are among the biggest insects in the world! Their bodies measure up to four inches, not including their legs. There are five kinds of wetas: tree wetas, tusked wetas, cave wetas, ground wetas and most gross of all, the giant weta, also known as “Wetapunga”, meaning lumpy weta in Maori. Did you know that wetas have been around since the time of dinosaurs?


  • Wetas live on islands off the coast of New Zealand and they cannot fly.
  • However, cave wetas jump up to six feet and can live up to seven years!
  • Giant wetas cannot jump because they are too heavy.
  • Wetas come out at night and are hunted by another nocturnal creature, the Morepork owl.
  • The Maori people are native to New Zealand and also call the giant weta the “god of ugly things.”

4 thoughts on “Getting Wild with the Weta Bug!”

  1. Very good article but you forgot that Wetas have the ablility to freeze themselves at winter time, in an icicle and then put themselves into a cryogenic sleep them wake up unfrozen at spring.

  2. Thank you 4 the coments!!
    The fact about wetas being able to freeze themselves was in the original article but was removed by the editors. I have written a new animal profile, this time on the Dodo bird, hope u like it!!

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