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Jul. 03, 2013

George Lucas Could Thank This Insect Group for Inspiration

by The Bug Chicks

Click to enlarge images
There is a fabulous veggie garden in the backyard of our office. In that garden, you can find all kinds of arthropods—aphids, bumblebees, ladybugs, and lacewings to name a few. Recently, as we’re working late, it seems like every lacewing in the garden is fluttering around our office windows.
 
Lacewings, and other insects like dobsonflies, alderflies and antlions, belong to a group of insects called the neuropteroids. All of these insects have a common, distinguishing characteristic: The adults have an incredible arrangement of veins on their wings. It's a widely diverse group with some pretty incredible adapations and behaviors. One species in particular, the antlion, may have inspired the Star Wars creature, the Sarlacc!
 
Check out our video below, made for Texas A&M's department of entomology, to learn more about the neuropteroids. We think you'll be surprised at what you might discover. And you don't want to miss the epic recreation of the Sarlacc by Kristie's little brother....

The Neuropteroids: Lacewings & Relatives from Bug Chicks on Vimeo.

About The Bug Chicks

Kristie Reddick and Jessica Honaker are The Bug Chicks. They each have Masters Degrees in Entomology and love to teach people about insects and spiders.

The views expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Science Friday.

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