"I haven't really been doing this for any research purposes"
August 22, 2020 5:14 AM   Subscribe

That was much more fascinating than I expected it to be. I appreciated the observations of the presenter, too. The whole thing was a great early morning watch, leaving me full of wonder for the complexity of things I can't even observe myself. Thanks for posting!
posted by hippybear at 5:41 AM on August 22, 2020 [4 favorites]

Metafilter: Clearly the best moth.
posted by TheCoug at 6:23 AM on August 22, 2020 [12 favorites]

I love videos that don’t waste a second and are just straight-up interesting the whole way through. Subscribed. You can really tell when the presenter is “look at this cool thing I love!”... so much better than the presenter that is more worried about you knowing how great they are.
posted by Robin Kestrel at 6:59 AM on August 22, 2020 [8 favorites]

Something about the way the firefly legs opened wide when it jumped up and started flying really screamed "wheeeee!" (or "aaaaahhhh!") and I found it incredibly amusing.

He's right though, that muppet looking moth is clearly the best moth.

Wonderful video. Thank you!
posted by misskaz at 7:05 AM on August 22, 2020 [4 favorites]

Here's a recent Mefi post with more insects taking off in slow motion
posted by dhruva at 7:09 AM on August 22, 2020 [1 favorite]

Really enjoyed this, thanks.
posted by Orlop at 8:11 AM on August 22, 2020

misskaz, those were my thoughts exactly. Several of the insects had that front legs forward like that. It's totally how I would fly, with my arms flung out ahead of me going, "wheeee!".
posted by Horkus at 9:01 AM on August 22, 2020 [1 favorite]

That Muppet comment, and what he says right after that, which I was sorely tempted to share but won't spoil.
This was terrific. Showing it to the kids now!
posted by martin q blank at 9:16 AM on August 22, 2020

up! up! _\|•,•|/_
posted by wreckingball at 9:17 AM on August 22, 2020 [2 favorites]

Oh, this video made me very happy. Thank you!
posted by brundlefly at 9:18 AM on August 22, 2020

If you want to go down a deep scientific rabbit hole of hypotheses about insect flight, look up "clap and fling". Note in the video how often the wings touch on the top or bottom of the stroke; that increases lift in ways that we're still trying to fully understand and model. There are vortices involved.
posted by clawsoon at 9:39 AM on August 22, 2020 [3 favorites]

I loved this! And I love how much he loves this, and I love that he has a favorite moth. This was just wonderfully fascinating and enthralling and so calming to watch.
posted by obfuscation at 10:30 AM on August 22, 2020 [1 favorite]

I love that he has a favorite moth

If there ever was a moth to have as a favorite, that would be the one.
posted by hippybear at 10:37 AM on August 22, 2020 [1 favorite]

This is a pure good on a day I really really needed it ❤️
posted by MiraK at 10:58 AM on August 22, 2020

The next time I feel like I'm being attacked by a flying insect, I'll try to remember that in insect terms it probably feels like it's barely keeping it together, awkwardly rotating in the wrong direction with every desperate flap. And then I'll then I'll be like "me too, bug, me too."
posted by Rora at 11:11 AM on August 22, 2020 [7 favorites]

Does the aphid ratchet itself into long backwards somersaults as it flies? That seems like a inefficient way to go forward.
posted by waving at 11:27 AM on August 22, 2020 [1 favorite]

If I'm doing the math right, the reality happens roughly 100 times faster than the video.
posted by clawsoon at 12:41 PM on August 22, 2020

Same guy with flying ants. Superman poses and belly flops.
posted by clawsoon at 12:48 PM on August 22, 2020

Did anyone see if he mentions anywhere the camera he is using?
posted by bz at 1:10 PM on August 22, 2020

bz, he has a tweet with "100% of the gear I used to film this."
posted by clawsoon at 1:16 PM on August 22, 2020 [1 favorite]

Is there such a thing as too much slo-mo?

Because most of these bugs look awkward as hell when taking off.
Arms flailing everywhere, heads all over the place, crooked flight paths.

Half of them seem surprised this flying lark worked at all!
posted by madajb at 1:39 PM on August 22, 2020 [7 favorites]

bzzp ---> flob flob flob

posted by Namlit at 2:28 PM on August 22, 2020

I don't even usually bother following YouTube channels, but I for-real mashed that button, as the kids say these days.
posted by desuetude at 6:06 PM on August 22, 2020

Seconded madajb, they look so different compared to birds, out of control and wobbly
posted by macrael at 1:12 AM on August 23, 2020

Wow. They really do get up for the downstroke.
posted by googly at 10:44 AM on August 23, 2020

Really it's great ..
posted by therugshopuk at 12:10 AM on August 25, 2020

they look so different compared to birds, out of control and wobbly

Think for a moment about how different their existence in physical space is compared to birds. The way gravity pulls on their tiny bodies, the way interacting with the air is for them... Like, I can't even really project myself into what being an insect is like, let alone a flying insect, but they must interact with the physical world very differently than I do simply because of scale.

But yes, they are not the most elegant things when taking off. Being able to fly at all is pretty amazing, in my book. Who cares how beautiful you are while doing it?
posted by hippybear at 1:10 PM on August 25, 2020

ugh. Part of what sucks about the ongoing end of the world is that I miss some of the cool bug stuff. This is a beautiful video. "I only went after the weird stuff" - exactly what I wanted to hear right at the beginning.

The thing I really love about this is that seeing insects at this level of detail gives them a sense of warmth and life that I don't think people normally feel for insects (and yes, it helps that the rosy maple moth does indeed look like a Hensonian creation) - seeing them this close, with this much texture and animation, really emphasizes that, yes, these are living animals. I don't know if this sounds strange, but it's something I've struggled with before in educating people about arthropods. They're different enough from us or other mammals that I don't think many people even really recognize them as living beings.

Thank you for this post. Things like this are why I've kept coming back to this website over the years.
posted by Lonnrot at 4:37 PM on August 29, 2020 [1 favorite]

PS The same channel's video on hoppers is also wonderful. Those of you marveling at how... inelegant these insects look in flight really ought to treat yourselves to some hoppers. They're some of the very cutest insects plus their jumping ability is a real marvel of anatomy and physiology.
posted by Lonnrot at 4:47 PM on August 29, 2020 [1 favorite]

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