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Everyone is familiar with what different insects look like; most people can tell the difference between a cockroach and a butterfly. But what about insect eggs? Do you think you could be able to tell the difference between two or even three different insect species eggs? Probably not, but this could be an incredibly helpful tool for people wanting to protect their home or garden from bad pests. If you could know what a pest’s eggs look like then you could possibly nip that problem in the bud before it even becomes a problem. Insect eggs come in all shapes and sizes, showing almost as much diversity as the actual insects themselves.

You can find insect eggs in all shapes and sizes, with some being smooth and round and other being ridged, some opaque and some all different colors, but most of them definitely looking rather alien. Some insect species lay their eggs in wood, glue them to the underbelly of leaves, or on other artificial or natural surfaces. Here are some examples of insect eggs that you’ve likely never spotted while walking around your yard or the park.

Butterfly eggs can be differentiated from other insect eggs by the small depression located at the top with a hole at its center. This hole is where the male butterflies put their sperm during fertilization. Butterflies make sure to stay away from laying their eggs near other areas that have already been claimed in order to protect the eggs from predators. This is why they also lay their eggs in batches (as do many other insects), as that can improve their chances for survival. When laying their eggs, butterflies look like they are piping out frosting on a cake with her abdomen. Now that is an interesting sight.

Stick insects can actually lay eggs without the need for any kind of fertilization by a male stick insect, a process called parthenogenesis. Stick insects lay between one and seven eggs a day, choosing to either drop them on the ground like so much trash, glue them to plants, or burying them. They tend to be more oval in shape and colored brown, black, tan, among other neutral colors, and can take between two and 14 months to hatch depending on the species.

What kind of insect eggs have you spotted? What color, size, and shape were they? Do you know what type of insect the eggs came from?