goliath beetle
The Goliath Beetle

The goliath beetle of West Africa is the world’s largest insect, measuring up to six inches in length. This awesome creature is magnificently colored with a deep red, velvety body and a black-and-white striped head and neck. But the giant’s most fearsome characteristic is a pair of black horns, each close to a quarter of an inch long — larger than the bodies of many insects!

Ordinarily, the beetle uses these horns to dig into the bark of a tree for its favorite meal of juicy sap. But when one of these mammoth insects was placed in a museum and fed a diet of bananas, it used the horns to slowly peel the fruit!

See drawing and examples of the Goliath Beetle.