In Brief
This weird little insect might look like a jumping flower from far away, but it's actually the strange Planthopper Nymph. Dr. Ross Piper traveled to Burma to get a closer look.

Planthoppers are a kind of insect, and they are terribly interesting. As you can see from the image below, they look a little bit like snowflakes resting on tropical branches. However, these little guys are anything but sedentary or silent. Entomologist Dr. Ross Piper wanted to get an up-close look at the Flatidae planthopper nymphs, a particularly fascinating breed of planthoppers that jump around with great speed and agility (as an aside, there are over 12,000 species of planthoppers).

planthopper
Image Credit: Smithsonian Channel

In order to find these creatures, Piper traveled to the forests of Burma. Fortunately, during a shoot for Smithsonian Channel, he stumbled across some of these little critters. For the most part, the minuscule insects keep themselves safe with hair-like stems protruding from their bodies, that look and act similarly to thorns. Watch while Dr. Piper has a little fun with these intriguing animals.