Phobaeticus chani

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Phobaeticus chani
Phobaeticus chani Bragg, 2008; Paratype Male.jpg
Male paratype of Phobaeticus chani
Scientific classification edit
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Euarthropoda
Class: Insecta
Order: Phasmatodea
Suborder: Verophasmatodea
Family: Phasmatidae
Subfamily: Clitumninae
Genus: Phobaeticus
P. chani
Binomial name
Phobaeticus chani
Bragg, 2008

Phobaeticus chani or Chan's megastick is a species of stick insect in the tribe Pharnaciini. It is the second longest insect in the world, having its record beaten in 2016 by Phryganistria chinensis. One specimen held in the Natural History Museum in London measures 567 mm (22.3 in).[1] This measurement is, however, with the front legs fully extended. The body alone still measures an impressive 357 mm (14.1 in).[2]

Photograph of the female holotype

Named after amateur Malaysian naturalist Datuk Chan Chew Lun,[2][3] only six specimens are known, all originating from the state of Sabah in Borneo.[2][4] Very little is known about its biology, but speculation in the popular press is that it may live in the canopy of the rainforest, making it especially hard to find;[4] however, no evidence supports this theory, and the related Phobaeticus kirbyi is commonly found on low-growing vegetation alongside rainforest paths.[2]

Phobaeticus chani was selected as one of "The Top 10 New Species" described in 2008 by the International Institute for Species Exploration at Arizona State University and an international committee of taxonomists.[5] The species was also listed as one of the top 10 discoveries of the decade in the BBC television documentary Decade of Discovery, first broadcast on December 14, 2010.[6]


  1. ^ "World's longest insect revealed". Natural History Museum. 2008-10-16. Archived from the original on 2008-10-19. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  2. ^ a b c d Hennemann, F.H.; Conle, O.V. (October 2008). "Revision of Oriental Phasmatodea: The tribe Pharnaciini Günther, 1953, including the description of the world's longest insect, and a survey of the family Phasmatidae Gray, 1835 with keys to the subfamilies and tribes (Phasmatodea: "Anareolatae": Phasmatidae)" (PDF). Zootaxa. Auckland, New Zealand: Magnolia Press. 1906: 1–316. ISSN 1175-5326. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  3. ^ "World's longest insect named after KK naturalist". The Star. 2008-10-18. Archived from the original on 2008-10-21. Retrieved 2008-10-18.
  4. ^ a b David Derbyshire (2008-10-16). "Introducing Chan's megastick: The record-breaking insect as long as your arm". Mail Online. Retrieved 2008-10-16.
  5. ^ Scientists announce top 10 new species. ASU News, May 22, 2009. Archived May 28, 2009, at the Wayback Machine
  6. ^ Decade of Discovery. BBC iPlayer.

External links[edit]