Even the most exquisite royal jewels can hardly compare to what mother nature has been cooking-up in the insect world... This collection was photographed at an insect fair, and while these beetles may look like something an artist painted in the studio - with brilliant metallic textures and iridescent coloration, they are in fact real insects that you can find in the wild - if you know where to look. Tropical places of the Earth are well known for their diverse collections of strange and beautiful creatures, some of the most spectacular of which are insects. Each species shown here has its own tactic for survival, which sometimes involves elaborate and spectacular colors, shapes, and patterns, the full purpose of which is still not completely understood in many cases. There are more than 400000 named species of beetles, comprising nearly half of all described insects, and about 1/4 of all named plant and animal species on Earth. New ones are discovered/described regularly, with estimates of between 5 and 8 million described and undescribed species in existance today. A note about insect collecting (to be fair to insect collectors)... ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- While it may seem like insect collectors endanger these amazing bugs by taking them from the wild, in reality they take only a tiny fraction of the wild populations, which can easily recover in a healthy ecosystem. Many collectors also contribute greatly to ...

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