GIANT Costa Rican Insects...
What's that Bug?

Costa Rican insects... the Rich Coast is home to thousands of different species. Ants, beetles, grasshoppers and many more - here, let's get out our magnifying glasses, and well - take a closer look!

But really, for some we won't have to!

Take the Hercules Beetle for example... it's GINORMOUS!!!

Growing the size of your hand - or bigger! - these amazing creatures are capable of lifting an object one hundred times its body weight!...

Costa Rican Insects Hercules Beetle
A Hercules Beetle at the Arenal Observatory


But it doesn't stop at giant beetles. There are all sorts of different Costa Rican insects...

Costa Rican Insects Butterfly
A Vibrant Butterfly

Take this vibrant orange butterfly pictured left.

Hovering around your porch lights at night - and again, given their size... you'd swear it was a bird!

And so...

Given the immense variety of insects here - all different colors, shapes and sizes... let's take an interesting, educational, and of course, fun! - look at some of the various types in Costa Rica.

To learn more about a specific "bug" - or to add a new one to the list (please do!), click on any of the links below...

Cicada   |   Giant Grasshopper   |   Hercules Beetle   |   Add a Bug!


About the same time - every year in Costa Rica - May/June roughly... it begins!

First you hear them - that Zzzzzzeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee...

And then yes - you'll eventually see one too!

Costa Rican Insects Cicadas
A Huge Cicada - Perched on My Hand...

Fascinating creatures - this particular cicada, is actually one of over 2000 different species throughout the world.

Costa Rican Insects Cicada

Probably one of the easiest bugs to recognize...

Their large bulging eyes, and a pair of long transparent veiny wings - are a dead giveaway.

A couple of interesting things about cicadas - did you know?...

In some parts of the world - they're served as food. Malaysia, Germany and Burma to name a few places - the insects are deep-fried and served as a delicacy.

And something else - in China - the shells of cicadas are used in traditional medicines.

Very interesting!

Giant Grasshopper

One of my all-time favorite Costa Rican insect encounters - is the night a giant grasshopper, Tropidacris Dux to be exact... flew onto my front porch, startling the neighbors, myself...

And even the cat!...

Costa Rican Insects Giant Grasshopper
Tropidacris Dux, a Very Big Grasshopper!

This particular insect - some refer to it as a cricket... is one of the biggest grasshoppers you'll ever see.

Coupled with an immense size, its bright red markings around the head and under the wings - make it all the more brilliant.

Hercules Beetle

Submitted by Mitch Drennan

It was our first visit to the Arenal Volcano, more specifically the Arenal Observatory.

Costa Rican Insects Hercules Beetle
Hercules Beetle in Arenal

We woke early in the morning to hike a few trails leading to waterfalls in the park.

But before we even made it to the trails...

There perched on a flower next to the sidewalk leading from the lodge, among some rainbow eucalyptus trees, we spotted a 6-inch male Hercules beetle.

He didn't seem to mind at all that we stuck around for a good ten minutes measuring him against our hands and taking pictures.

This was a very significant check on our "Animals We Want To See In Costa Rica" checklist.


Simply amazing Mitch! I've seen some pretty big beetles in Costa Rica - but none like this one - largest of all the "Rhinoceros" varieties. Thanks for submitting the write-up and photo!

- Jeff