Category:
Insects

Most Cockroach-Infested Home

In early 1997, Combat Insect Control ran a contest offering a $5000 cash prize to the person with the most cockroach-infested home.

The winner, from over 1000 people who entered, was Mary Esposito of Forest Park, Georgia. She complained that she had roaches living in her dishwasher, refrigerator, oven, coffeemaker, VCR, wallpaper, dresser drawers, and bathtub faucet. An entomologist hired by Combat estimated there were 75,000 roaches in her home.

Somehow I don't think that "most cockroach-infested home" is a record that will ever make its way into Guinness.

Orlando Sentinel - June 12, 1997



Palm Beach Post - Mar 16, 1997

Posted By: Alex - Fri Oct 27, 2017 - Comments (1)
Category: Insects, World Records, 1990s

President swallows wasp

A few days ago, a wasp flew into the mouth of Luis Guillermo Solis, the president of Costa Rica, while he was outside speaking to reporters. Solis swallowed it. Then he declared (in Spanish), "I ate it. I ate the wasp." More info at wtnh.com.

I'd like to see more politicians gulping insects out of the air like frogs as they speak. It would improve political oratory immensely.



The event also recalled that classic unscripted moment during Raiders of the Lost Ark when a fly appeared to crawl into the mouth of Paul Freeman, who was playing the character of the archaeologist Belloq. Although according to this site, the fly didn't really crawl into his mouth. The film editors, as a joke, took out a few frames to make it look as if the fly entered his mouth.

Posted By: Alex - Wed Jun 21, 2017 - Comments (2)
Category: Insects, Politics

Swarming: Its Control & Prevention

From the Barnsley Beekeepers Association:

The Snelgrove method was first described by Leonard E Snelgrove in his 1934 book, “Swarming - It’s Control and Prevention”. It follows on from decades of hive manipulation using various kinds of board to separate queen from brood. Leonard Snelgrove introduced his specific design of board that makes use of entrances above and below the board to “bleed” bees from one box to another.

However, what Snelgrove (I assume that's him) is demonstrating on the cover is Bee Bearding. I'm guessing that you need to master swarming control before attempting bee bearding, but I don't think he reveals the tricks of bee bearding in his book, which you can download here if you're curious to read it.

Posted By: Alex - Sat Jun 17, 2017 - Comments (0)
Category: Insects, Books

The Philadelphia Insectarium



World's biggest "insect zoo."


Article here.

Posted By: Paul - Tue May 09, 2017 - Comments (1)
Category: Insects, Museums

DDT Wallpaper

Trimz debuted their children's room DDT-impregnated wallpaper in 1946. It was available in two patterns: "Jack and Jill" or "Disney Favorites."

It was certified to be absolutely safe "because the DDT is fixed to the paper. It can't rub off!" But since you're not going to find any similar product sold nowadays, I'm guessing that it actually did rub off.



Popular Mechanics - May 1946



via Envisioning the American Dream

Posted By: Alex - Sat Mar 04, 2017 - Comments (5)
Category: Insects, 1940s

Cockroach Magnetization


Researchers at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore recently made an unusual discovery, which is that "the magnetic properties of living cockroaches are strikingly different from those of dead cockroaches."

Place a living cockroach in a magnetic field and it'll become magnetized, and then stay magnetized for about 50 minutes.

Place a dead cockroach in a magnetic field and it'll also become magnetized, but then remain magnetized for almost 50 hours.

The reason for the difference:

Cockroaches become magnetized because they contain magnetic particles that become aligned with an external magnetic field. These particles are trapped in a runny medium that has low viscosity in living cockroaches. But as soon as the creatures die, the medium begins to harden and its viscosity increases.

So I'm curious how strongly magnetized dead cockroaches become. Would it be possible to use them as refrigerator magnets?

More info: MIT Technology Review

Posted By: Alex - Tue Feb 28, 2017 - Comments (5)
Category: Insects, Science, Experiments

Anti-Mosquito Leggings

I'm a bit surprised these anti-mosquito leggings never (to my knowledge) caught on, because if they actually worked then who cares if they looked dorky. Then again, I suppose DEET had already been discovered.

Danville Morning News - Apr 6, 1937



Pittsburgh Post-Gazette - Apr 1, 1937

Harrisburg Evening News - Apr 2, 1937

Posted By: Alex - Sun Feb 12, 2017 - Comments (2)
Category: Fashion, Insects, 1930s

No-Roach

She seems a bit too happy to be applying No-Roach. Also, her eyes seem to follow you wherever you move.

The Monroe News-Star - Oct 23, 1967

Posted By: Alex - Wed Feb 08, 2017 - Comments (7)
Category: Insects, Advertising, 1960s

Butterflies in my stomach

Ronald Taylor, a professor of pathology at the University of Southern California School of Medicine, was an early promoter of an insect-based diet. In the 1970s, he published two books on the topic: Butterflies in My Stomach: Insects in Human Nutrition (1975) and Entertaining With Insects, Or: The Original Guide to Insect Cookery (1976). Some of the recipes in the books included:

  • Boiled cod with snail sauce
  • Wasp grubs fried in the comb
  • Moths sauteed in butter
  • Braised beef with caterpillars
  • New carrots with wireworm sauce
  • Gooseberry cream with sawflies
  • Devilled chafer grubs
  • Stag beetle larvae on toast

The full recipe for Peanut Butter Worm Cookies is below.





Posted By: Alex - Sun Jan 22, 2017 - Comments (2)
Category: Food, Insects, 1970s

Man in Tent for Deep Woods OFF



Apparently, this commercial featuring a guy in a tent filled with biting insects has attained a certain minor cult status I was not aware of.

The original is in the first video at the 3:40 mark.



Here's the guy, now revealed to be Bill Clement, still stuck in the tent fifteen years later.



But most recently, he (or a younger surrogate) finally gets to come out of the tent--and he's got a sexy woman with him. That's progress!



Posted By: Paul - Sat Oct 15, 2016 - Comments (2)
Category: Business, Advertising, Products, Insects, Nature, 1970s

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Alex Boese
Alex is the creator and curator of the Museum of Hoaxes. He's also the author of various weird, non-fiction books such as Elephants on Acid.

Paul Di Filippo
Paul has been paid to put weird ideas into fictional form for over thirty years, in his career as a noted science fiction writer. He has recently begun blogging on many curious topics with three fellow writers at The Inferior 4+1.

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