My Sidekicks


Darcey joined my little clan recently when she landed on my mum’s arm missing a leg (something not uncommon for stick insects).  I don’t know why she’s called Darcey and I’m still not sure where the name came from, it just popped into my head and makes me smile almost as much as she does. Like many of the names of wildlife that regularly visits the garden, it came out of nowhere and seems to have stuck.

She’s an unarmed stick insect (acanthoxyla inermis). Due to the swaying motion she makes, something that is thought to help them see as well as better sell their camouflage by mimicking the wind, I often call her Darcey Dancer. She is now fully grown, after about 5 moults since having her, and laying eggs (this particular species doesn’t need no man), which I find hilarious to witness as she literally shoots them out letting them ricochet into the air before falling to the bottom of her cage, though this is a recent development and none of them have hatched yet.

Many people don’t know this, but the southwest of England has a thriving population of walking sticks. You can read more about them here!

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