Wildlife & Wild Places

A Few Rainforest Insects to Celebrate World Environment Day

Dino Martins studies insect behavior around the world and their impact on environmental and human health. He captures stunning photos of a world often overlooked as “small and uninteresting.” 

In honor of World Environment Day, which is today, June 5th, here are a few amazing insects from the rainforest in Western Kenya to remind us of the incredible and wonderful creatures that we share this planet with.

One of the most beautiful of all African insects are the jewel damselflies, such as this dancing jewel damselfly found along the banks of the Yala River:

Dancing-jewel-sp.-Kakamega-LR1
(Photo by Dino Martins)

Among the many gorgeous butterflies in the rain forests of Western Kenya are the Charaxes, or emperor butterflies. They fly high and fast through the forest canopy, but can’t resist the lure of fresh dung to feast on! Many Charaxes butterflies have the most beautifully intricate patterns on the undersides of their wings, like this giant charaxes (Charaxes castor).

King-charaxes-Kakamega-LR1
(Photo by Dino Martins)

Some Charaxes species have especially intense coloration on their wings, as can be seen here in this blue-spotted charaxes, flashing its wings in the sunlight:

Blue-Spotted Charaxes Butterfly
(Photo by Dino Martins)

Even the fruit flies in the forest are colorful, as can be seen here with these Drosophila on some rotting fruit:

Drosophila-Kakamega-LR2
(Photo by Dino Martins)

The beetles are not to be outdone with this amazing metallic tortoise beetle:

Silver-Tortoise-beetle-Kakamega-LR1
(Photo by Dino Martins)

More from the wonderful world of bugs soon.

Spend a few minutes in the company of insects and plants today if you can!

Happy World Environment Day!

Read More By Dino Martins

My name is Dino J. Martins, I am a Kenyan entomologist and I love insects. The Kiswahili word for insect is dudu and if you didn't know already, insects rule the world! Thanks to the amazing efforts of the 'little things that run the world' I was humbled to be selected as a National Geographic Emerging Explorer. This blog is a virtual dudu safari through the fascinating world of bugs. Enjoy, leave a comment and send any questions or comments to me through: insects.eanhs@gmail.com
  • Shawn L Riddick

    When I was a child God spoke to me and said He wanted the people of Earth to know He was deeply sorry there was so much evil here, He said He introduced Evil from a Sister Universe and it spread like cancer. In order to survive He created Holiness and Heaven and separated Himself from His own creation. He said insecticides tortured His smallest creatures and Farmers would not enter Heaven because of it. God said some of His insects have higher consciousness and can feel joy and agony. God loves insects too. Our atmosphere can also be destroyed to the point of no return causing catastrophic failure ending most life on Earth. God said He was considering giving His Earth to His Insects. Please read warningfromgod and treat insects with respect. We can only protect our homes, bodies, livestock, and play area, yards etc.

  • Shawn L Riddick

    When I was a child God spoke to me and said He wanted the people of Earth to know He was deeply sorry there was so much evil here, He said He introduced Evil from a Sister Universe and it spread like cancer. In order to survive He created Holiness and Heaven and separated Himself from His own creation. He said insecticides tortured His smallest creatures and Farmers would not enter Heaven because of it. God said some of His insects have higher consciousness and can feel joy and agony. God loves insects too. Our atmosphere can also be destroyed to the point of no return causing catastrophic failure ending most life on Earth. God said He was considering giving His Earth to His Insects. Please read warningfromgod and treat insects with respect. We can only protect our homes, bodies, livestock, and play area, yards etc.

  • Ima Ryma

    June 5th is World Environment Day,
    As proclaimed by some human folk.
    Humans have such a goofy way,
    If ’tweren’t so sad, ‘twould be a joke.
    To humans, we of the bug world
    Are mostly deemed pests that need be
    Gone, so buggings at us are hurled,
    Cuz humans are a dumb specie.
    But we bugs here will still remain
    Long after humans self destruct.
    In the meantime, bugs will maintain
    Priority in bug conduct.

    Oh look what Mother Nature’s brung –
    A nice fresh pile of yummy dung!

  • Ima Ryma

    June 5th is World Environment Day,
    As proclaimed by some human folk.
    Humans have such a goofy way,
    If ’tweren’t so sad, ‘twould be a joke.
    To humans, we of the bug world
    Are mostly deemed pests that need be
    Gone, so buggings at us are hurled,
    Cuz humans are a dumb specie.
    But we bugs here will still remain
    Long after humans self destruct.
    In the meantime, bugs will maintain
    Priority in bug conduct.

    Oh look what Mother Nature’s brung –
    A nice fresh pile of yummy dung!

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