Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Would a bug die by falling?

  1. Aug 5, 2006 #1
    An ant has no skeletons, so as long as she doesn't burn by falling, she wouldn't die right? Neither any of hte other animals who don't have skeletons.
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 5, 2006 #2
    The ant has an exoskeleton, I am not sure if it is across the entire species, and the insects should have an initial stage before this skeleton develops--they are soft "larvae" when hatched. Also, the skeleton has to be considered along with scaling: i.e. mass, acceleration, impulse, etc.
  4. Aug 5, 2006 #3
    Accelerating "bug" insects, bacteria, etc.

    Here is an interesting link
  5. Aug 29, 2006 #4
    I would think an ant would not be able to reach a fatal terminal velocity, in our atmosphere. Dropping an ant on the moon however (suffocation excluded) and high enough, should kill the ant.
  6. Aug 30, 2006 #5


    User Avatar
    Gold Member

    Smaller creatures are proportionally less susceptible to death by falling because their surface to mass ratio is high.

    It is partly to do with air resistance, but there is also a factor of material support (just like a narrow copper pipe is stronger than a large copper pipe).

    As an alternate example to an ant, a tarantula, if dropped from human-height, will die.
  7. Aug 30, 2006 #6


    User Avatar
    Staff Emeritus
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member

    Good. I hate spiders!
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook

Have something to add?

Similar Discussions: Would a bug die by falling?
  1. What bug is this? (Replies: 9)

  2. Q: identify bug? (Replies: 8)