What if bugs were people sized

The Deer Bug, The Stag Beetle, Insects

Insect Power Compared To Size

The rhinoceros beetle is a colossus in insect conditions and is rated among the mightiest animals in the world in comparison to its body weight. You have probably heard that the rhino beetle can carry up to 850 times its own weight without even buckling at the knee segments, incredible!

Indeed, it is proportionally stronger than an elephant that’s the strongest land animal in terms of brute force.

Having said this, it’s worth mentioning that if an elephant had been shrunk to the size of a bug its potency in relation to its mass would increase x-fold.

This is down to a phenomenon known as the scaling law officially recognized by Galileo in 1638. (click for more info)

The Scaling Law Preventing Insects From Becoming Giant Monsters

This means that elements of a body aren’t scaled up or down by exactly the same amount.

In plain terms, if a bug grew to the size of an elephant without altering the original shape of its body, it would be so heavy in proportion to its legs it wouldn’t be able to move its own carcass, let alone carry eight hundred and fifty times its own weight.

It would need to radically modify its proportions starting with its legs. This can be illustrated from the growth proportions of a human being.

In the human, the head becomes smaller and the legs bigger and stronger as the individual grows to adult size. If the legs remained proportionally the same from infancy to maturity they wouldn’t have the power to hold the body.

There are other anatomical constraints such as the insect respiratory system, which might become inadequate with the greater volume compared to the insect’s surface area. It would require lungs instead of simply absorbing atmosphere through its spiracles to have the ability to meet its increased need for oxygen.

Furthermore, unless it had been born in a enormous dung pile the size of a hillock, it wouldn’t be able to supply itself with the tremendous amounts of food that it would need to keep going.

So rest reassured, even if someone invented a magical hormone medication to grow, say, cockroaches to the size of a human, the consequent monsters are about as nimble as a wheel dozer with flat tires.

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