Stuff on bugs
Enter the weird and wonderful world of water bugs! What stories those creepy crawly, spineless creatures have to tell. They've been around for about 500 million years, when they filled the earth's lakes and oceans. Some came even before the dinosaurs.
Prehistoric dragonflies were the largest flying spineless creatures ever to have lived! Ancient dragonflies had wingspans as long as your arm! Today, the Australian dragonfly, which starts life as a nymph in creeks and ponds, can fly as fast as a car in suburban streets.
Having evolved over the ages, many water bugs use their ancient behaviour, even to this day, to escape dangers - like flash floods and dirty waters. Some, like those sensitive, soft-bodied freshwater mussels, can live for up to 100 years in the same spot.
Today, water bugs are still the most common critters to be found anywhere there is water, all over the world. A diverse and abundant number of bugs will let you know your waterway is healthy. Guides and posters on bugs can be downloaded from the NSW Waterwatch publication list.
Page last updated: 26 February 2011