Spike is the World's First Twitter Famous Beetle, Probably

Invertebrates are the most successful animals on the planet. We might have iPhones, vibrating chairs and the portable Margaritaville, but they've been around a lot longer than us, there are a lot more of them and the smart money says they'll be around long after we're gone. This goes double for beetles, but in terms of animal internet fame, we don't tend to give them much face time.

It could be a jealousy thing, or it could be that creepy crawlies freak people out, but in either case, a mammal usually stands a much better chance of racking up a hefty follower count on Twitter. Spike may well be the bug to buck the trend. Spike is a stag beetle, he's six months old, lives in Tokyo and loves nothing more than to create beautiful beetle artwork. As you can imagine, Twitter is currently going nuts over this.
It all started when Spike's owner tweeted some of his mandiwork (because beetles don't have hands, they have mandibles, save your applause for the end) on her personal page. People went mad for it, so much so that early last week the little guy got his own personal account. At time of writing he has 45,600 followers and counting. That would be an impressive growth rate for a human, let alone a beetle.

As well as his drawings, which are achieved by placing a felt tip pen in his jaws and setting him loose on a blank sheet of paper, he's also been photographed sitting on a little throne, carrying various objects (a knife, a bundle of spaghetti, etc) and just generally being adorable. On the 4th of July, he was even snapped hoisting the red, white and blue, because what better way to celebrate patriotism than to have it represented by an animal with no concept of nationality. Or celebrations. Or flags.
Some of Spike's work has actually gone on sale, with the promise of more original work for sale in the future. Is beetle artwork a sign of invertebrate intelligence? No, not even a little bit, stags just have a natural impulse to clamp down on things which are placed between their mandibles, it just happens that if you do it right, you can turn them into unwitting artists. It's amusing though, and a good way to gather information on what beetles are like as household pets.

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