Guide to Genera of Malayan Water Bugs

When George Lucas created characters for his Star Wars’ series, could he have taken inspiration from A Guide to Malayan Water Bugs (Hemiptera-Heteroptera) with Keys to the Genera?

Written by the University of Singapore’s Department of Zoology in 1963, this easy-to-read guide offers readers a quick look at the different types of water bugs found in Malayan in the 1960s. Uncannily, illustrations in the guide draw striking parallels to some of the Star Wars characters. Let’s take a look.

Uncanny similarity between Salacious B. Crumb (left) vs Metrocoris (right)

Uncanny similarity between Star Wars character Salacious B. Crumb (left) vs an illustration from the guide (right)


Uncanny similarity between The evil General Grievous (left) vs Hydrometra (right)

The evil General Grievous in Star Wars (left) vs an illustration from the guide (right)

 Photos: 50 Best ‘Star Wars’ Characters of All Time


The 33-page guide serves as an introduction to the study of Malayan water bugs. You can learn about their genera and species, various shapes and sizes, the insects’ habitats and even their diets and behaviors. Some examples include the family of Hydrometridae  – popularly called water measurers because they walk on the water surface with measured steps (Pg 4); the family of Nepidae – water scorpions and water stick insects with flattened or cylindrical forms with a pair of long respiratory siphons terminally at the posterior end (Pg 18); and the family of Notonectidae (Water boatmen; Backswimmers) which are carnivorous backswimmers that feed on a variety of small aquatic animals (Pg 20).

Image of contents in the guide Image of contents in the guide

Full of illustrations, this visually inspiring guide will expand your imagination and knowledge on the biodiversity of the water insects and its ecosystem. After all, it’s about a bug’s life!

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