Roly Polies Came From the Sea to Conquer the Earth | Deep Look

Roly Polies Came From the Sea to Conquer the Earth | Deep Look

Pill bugs…… roly polies….. potato bugs… whatever you want to call them, somehow there’s something less creepy about these guys than other insects. More loveable, or something. Maybe it’s because they’re not insects
at all. Pill bugs are actually crustaceans. They’re more closely related to shrimp and
lobsters than crickets or beetles. Pill bugs even taste like shellfish, if you
cook them right. Some adventurous foragers call them wood shrimp. As early as 300 million years ago, some intrepid
ancestor crawled out of the ocean, sensing there might be more to eat, or less competition,
on dry land.” But unlike lobsters, pillbugs can roll up
into a perfect little ball for protection. If you look closely you can see the evidence
of where these guys came from. Like their ocean-dwelling cousins, pill bugs
still use gills to breathe. True insects — like this cricket — use a
totally different system. See those tiny holes on this cricket’s abdomen? They’re called spiracles. They lead to a series of tubes that bring
fresh air directly to the insect’s cells. But pill bugs don’t have any of that. To survive on land, they had to adapt. Their gills, called pleopods, are modified
to work in air. Folds in the pleopod gills developed into
hollow branched structures, almost like tiny lungs. In a way, the pillbug is only halfway to becoming
a true land animal. Because… they’re still gills. They need to be kept moist in order to work. Which is why you usually find pill bugs in
moist places, like under damp, rotting logs. They can’t venture too far away. Sure, pill bugs look like the most ordinary
of bugs. But they’re much more than that: evidence
that over evolutionary time, species make big, life-changing leaps. And those stories are written on their bodies. Hey, while we’re on the subject of oddball
crustaceans… check out this episode about mantis shrimp. Their eyes see colors we can’t even
comprehend. Their punch is faster than Muhammad Ali’s. And while we have you: Subscribe. OK? Thank you! And see you next time.

100 thoughts on “Roly Polies Came From the Sea to Conquer the Earth | Deep Look”

  1. I love pill bugs. They hold a special place in my heart, as I used to go hunting for these guys in gardens when I was little. I grossed out my mom a lot with these little buggers. XD

  2. I love these little potato bugs, what I used to call them when I was a kid. I used to find them everywhere, especially underneath rocks.

  3. Never heard of any of those names that you've called it. They're called woodlice/woodlouse or chucky pigs here in England.

  4. if bugs were the size of large cats or small dogs you know dang well we would love them and have them as pets,could you imagine alking your 4 foot pill bug thats a gentle giant?

  5. If you’ve ever flipped one over and lightly touched its legs it’s like little hooks you should try it it grapples onto your finger

  6. Yeah, Roly Polies are the only "insects" I can tolerate. Of course I couldn't hold 10 of em in my hand at once, but 1 is fine.

  7. I call them Butchy bois. I also love to hold them because in person they look kinds cute and they are harmless

  8. I mean, on them needing to stay in moist places so their gills dont dry out; we'd have the same issue with our lungs if they werent inside us, no? Granted, if the gills were inside the pillbug and it say… sucked air to them through a tube, itd basically be lungs, but evolution likes to mimic itself :p

  9. I thought about this and if pill bugs can adapt from living in water t land can't humans adapt to live in water and breath water

  10. I used to pick these up. And watch them ball up and then they would release themselves when the coast was clear. Rolliepollielivesmatter

  11. I've always told people they are soil dwelling crustaceans. Just as a useless fact. I would always get weird looks.

  12. I have always loved folly Polly’s more than other bugs and didn’t know why while at the same time I love the ocean such as crustaceans and other sea animals now I know why I have always loved rolls pollys so much

  13. In south korea we call them 공벌레(gongbeolle) or 콩벌레(kongbeolle) which means ball bug or bean(probably pea) bug

  14. Why they keep teaching kids about evolution…it is a theory proven wrong over and over again…what's the deal with this big lie.

  15. oh my god, im a murderer. i cant even count the amount of times ive caged these up in a dry grassy turtle cage.

  16. I Never Kill These things cause I mean,
    What did they Do to us,I Always Catch These things on my wall when I Go feed my Doggos,I just let them crawl up on my arm,I would Sometimes Let then come inside

  17. I used to find pill bugs all the time and play with them when i was 5-6. Now i cant find one single pill bug anymore 🙁

  18. I love your videos but please stop using crickets as examples when talking about insects. They terrify me lol

  19. Hmmm I never knew any of this about pill bugs. Man now I feel bad when I pick up a rock and don’t put it back and leave these things unable to even breath.

  20. There is probably someone out there who, after watching this video, tries to see if the Pill Bugs could breathe underwater

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