Slow Motion Video Filmed At 3,200 FPS Shows Insects Taking Flight

Most people really don’t care much for the insects that share their personal space. Some may be interesting, such as fireflies, but likely, your thoughts about mosquitoes and houseflies are quite different.

When you see the following video from a North Carolina-based research biologist, Dr. Adrian Smith, your thoughts on those insects may be quite different. After all, he shows them in extreme slow motion flight using a video that captures them at 3,200 FPS. These insects are taking off, landing, and fluttering within their little studio and the results are better than you can imagine.

Dr. Smith filmed the videos in his basement using a black light and species from 8 different taxonomic orders. They include familiar insects, such as the Eastern firefly. Interestingly, they beat their wings at 62 times per second to stay in the air, and the takeoff is much more complex than most people realize. The rosy maple moth is another species that is included in the video.

Photo: YouTube / Ant Lab

Dr. Smith refers to the rosy maple moth as “clearly the best moth.” You might recognize them as being a fluffy and cartoonish looking moth that is similar to a teddy bear of the insect world. Dr. Smith refers to it as a flying Muppet.

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His choice of using a black light also brings in some interesting and rare flies.
This includes the salmon fly, and you get to watch the wing movements as it is in motion.

Photo: YouTube / Ant Lab

There are some that theorize that these flies may have used their flight over the surface of the water before they were able to truly go airborne. It really doesn’t matter if that is true or not, they did manage to get the nickname of the fish fly. You will appreciate seeing it in the video.

Watch the video for yourself below and see what extreme slow motion can do for these unique creatures that share our world.

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