he video: As if cockroaches weren't menacing enough, scientists in South Africa have discovered a new species with a unique ability: It can jump, as far as 20 inches in a single bound. Saltoblattella montistabularis will be added to the list of 4,000 known species of cockroaches. The others crawl around with a "scuttling motion," but this creature bounds forward "powered by rapid and synchronous extension of the hind legs that are twice the length of the other legs and make up 10 percent of the body weight," say researchers. (Watch the video below.) At four-tenths of an inch long, these "leaproaches" can cover as much as 50 times their length in one leap.
The reaction: Fifty times its own length? These "creepy" bugs "aren't just leaproaches," says Mark Memmott at NPR. "They're Superroaches." The video below is sure to give more than a few people "the willies." Definitely, says Maureen O' Connor at Gawker. A "face-attacking cockroach leap monster" capable of out-jumping even locusts? It's essentially "the horrible monster bug from all New Yorkers' nightmares." See for yourself:
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- How my boyfriend and I learned to live on one income
- He said he was leaving. She ignored him.
- Why the poor's investment of choice is so alarming
- Why Texas Republicans may want to cool the anti-Obama land-grab talk
- Why China's Communist Party is headed for collapse
- 31 TV shows to watch in 2014
- Why conservatives see rural America as the 'real' America
- How to make perfect fried rice in 6 easy steps
- Why atheism doesn't have the upper hand over religion
- Affirmative action is doomed. Here's what progressives should do about it.
Subscribe to the Week