A popular hobby that Taiwan has adopted from Japan is having pet beetles.
Kids here are obsessed with them.
They have “beetle cards” which document different stats for the beetle and a picture display. The cards have bar-codes too which allow the kids to stick them into beetle game consoles found around the city and play games. I haven’t quite seen how these work but they seem pretty cool.
Check out the English site for the cards.
They’re frequently brought in as a “show and tell” item and mentioned as a favourite hobby in my classes. I have scores of little entomologists in the making.
Stag and rhino beetles seem to be the “it” beetles. Since my roommates won’t let me have a pet rat, which I guess makes sense because of our 2 cats, and since I’m a weirdo I decided to get my very own beetle. I really wanted one of the gigantic rhino beetles (like on the card above) but they run about 4500NT (155$ CND) and I’m too cheap to buy something that expensive that’s going to die in 3 or 4 months. Even if they are huge and really really cool.
So I browsed around the pet shop. I decided there was no way I could handle having one of the beetles that’s pinchers actually pinch… like this guy:
The rhino guys have pinchers that move up and down but they’re pretty harmless, the ones who’s pinchers move inward look like they hurt.
That’s when I found him. Shining all by himself under a light. Maimed with battle scars but the only beetle that actually had color. And on sale because he only has 5 and a half legs. It was love at first site. I still don’t know what kind of beetle he is exactly but he’s pretty enough for me.
So I grabbed him and took him home. My ulterior motive is to photograph him, my little model… but I have to get over my squeamishness. I managed to take him out for a couple of snaps but then he flew away (I caught him)… so I’m going to have to devise some sort of netting type setting that won’t make me freak out if he starts flying around and I’m caught inside with him.
I’ve named him Wu dien Bon (5 and 1/2).