Theffeed Tech have one example of a number of articles showing a video of six insects dancing in a synchronised way.

The text reads:

These weird looking bugs appeared in a house in Houston, Texas.

The off creatures have baffled NASA scientists and entomologists all around the world as no one knows what they are or what they're doing.

The sources for these articles aren't what I would call trustworthy sources.

The video is depicting round black bugs moving in a synchronized way.

black bugs

Have these bugs been baffling scientists? Or are they a previously identified species and this behavior is normal for them?

  • 15
    How many entomologists does NASA have on staff? Sep 6, 2017 at 10:45
  • 7
    It's rather ironic that while Unilad claims that "nobody in the world has ever seen anything like this before", a local entomologist identified these insects as Homaemus proteus.
    – Jordy
    Sep 6, 2017 at 11:54
  • 4
    What is the content of those clickbait "articles"?
    – npst
    Sep 6, 2017 at 13:10
  • 1
    If you have an eye for it, there is quite some "synchronization" going on in the insect world. Ants and bees, for example, are capable of quite stunning cooperative feats. Dunno if it would baffle a NASA entomologist [who?], though.
    – DevSolar
    Sep 6, 2017 at 14:09
  • 5
    I am not a big fan of this question, because it is unclear what it means. If some NASA scientists (what a weird appeal to authority!) or entomologists are unfamiliar with a species from a video, where others can spot it immediately, does that mean the answer is true or false. The YouTube reference provided includes the name of the species. I'm only leaving it open because it already has an answer.
    – Oddthinking
    Sep 6, 2017 at 14:19

1 Answer 1


As people have commented, NASA isn't particularly associated with entomologists, so that seems to be a bit of a red herring and unnecessary appeal to authority. So what if NASA is confused by these bugs? Would it matter if your local mechanic was confused by these bugs? Or a Brain Surgeon?

As was also commented, these species have been identified as Homaemus proteus. This page gives several images of them. These insects range in the southern US (CA-TX, FL) to Columbia.

If you want more about these particular insects, it seems there is quite the dearth of information about them on the internet. You may have to buy an actual book!

Catalog of the Heteroptera, or True Bugs of Canada and the Continental United States

By Thomas J. Henry, Richard C. Froeschner

Brill Academic Publishers, 1988

ISBN: 0-916846-44-X

Cite: 12328

The only Wikipedia page on this insect seems to be in Swedish (probably because it was cataloged by a Swede in 1862). Although given the recent interest due to this video, I suspect someone will create and expand on this. Due to the dearth of information, I can't determine if this is normal or somehow aberrant behavior for these insects.

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