Swallowtail_photoThere are over seven billion people in the world, and while that number might seem high, that’s nothing next to the number of insects. Over 75% of all animals alive are insects—for every person, there might be as many as 200,000 of these tiny creatures. And while you might not be fond of insects when you’re on a camping trip and getting bitten by mosquitoes or trying to defend your kitchen cupboards from a colony of hungry ants, insects are a very important part of our planet’s life. They help pollinate plants, provide food for other animals, and make the world a cleaner a place to live.

If their numbers and importance to our planet weren’t impressive enough, lots of insects are capable of astounding physical feats. Tiny leafcutter ants climb 200-foot-tall trees every day—the equivalent of a person scaling Mount Everest. On their way back down, they carry leaf pieces that weigh as much as they do. When avoiding predators, moths can make hundreds of turns in less than a minute, making them much more agile than our jets. The next time you see an insect, look and see if there’s anything extraordinary about it that you might have overlooked!