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Roly Polies Came From the Sea to Conquer the Earth | Deep Look

August 27, 2019

Pill bugs…… roly polies….. potato bugs… whatever you want to call them, somehow there’s something less creepy about these guys than other insects. More loveable, or something. Maybe it’s because they’re not insects
at all. Pill bugs are actually crustaceans. They’re more closely related to shrimp and
lobsters than crickets or beetles. Pill bugs even taste like shellfish, if you
cook them right. Some adventurous foragers call them wood shrimp. As early as 300 million years ago, some intrepid
ancestor crawled out of the ocean, sensing there might be more to eat, or less competition,
on dry land.” But unlike lobsters, pillbugs can roll up
into a perfect little ball for protection. If you look closely you can see the evidence
of where these guys came from. Like their ocean-dwelling cousins, pill bugs
still use gills to breathe. True insects — like this cricket — use a
totally different system. See those tiny holes on this cricket’s abdomen? They’re called spiracles. They lead to a series of tubes that bring
fresh air directly to the insect’s cells. But pill bugs don’t have any of that. To survive on land, they had to adapt. Their gills, called pleopods, are modified
to work in air. Folds in the pleopod gills developed into
hollow branched structures, almost like tiny lungs. In a way, the pillbug is only halfway to becoming
a true land animal. Because… they’re still gills. They need to be kept moist in order to work. Which is why you usually find pill bugs in
moist places, like under damp, rotting logs. They can’t venture too far away. Sure, pill bugs look like the most ordinary
of bugs. But they’re much more than that: evidence
that over evolutionary time, species make big, life-changing leaps. And those stories are written on their bodies. Hey, while we’re on the subject of oddball
crustaceans… check out this episode about mantis shrimp. Their eyes see colors we can’t even
comprehend. Their punch is faster than Muhammad Ali’s. And while we have you: Subscribe. OK? Thank you! And see you next time.


  • Reply Jillybean711 January 17, 2017 at 2:28 pm

    I love pill bugs. They hold a special place in my heart, as I used to go hunting for these guys in gardens when I was little. I grossed out my mom a lot with these little buggers. XD

  • Reply Tashfia Animates July 25, 2019 at 10:43 am

    In my old school. We called them bill boys if I can remember correctly 😛

  • Reply Sigh borg July 25, 2019 at 1:08 pm

    My favorite bugs! 😀

  • Reply Minerva Dejito July 25, 2019 at 2:04 pm

    I got bitten by one

  • Reply Brandon Maravilla July 25, 2019 at 2:41 pm

    They arent coming to concure they adapted

  • Reply Soviet Pug July 25, 2019 at 3:10 pm

    Ito rin ba yung baboy baboy na tinatawag namin d2 sa pilipinas? O iba to?

  • Reply Sapphire Lily July 25, 2019 at 6:07 pm


  • Reply N.U Marley_Da_King24 July 25, 2019 at 11:53 pm

    Me: reads title

    Also me:Then we came along.

  • Reply Grumpy Cat July 26, 2019 at 12:44 am

    Who else thinks when their curled up in a ball it looks like the demogorgan with its face closed

  • Reply Brock Patrick July 26, 2019 at 3:21 am

    If they have gills dosent that mean they can't drown

  • Reply WilsonBlock100 Radio July 26, 2019 at 3:49 am

    If they're related to shrimp then they're related to cockroaches idc idc lol

  • Reply agent 9 July 26, 2019 at 4:00 am

    I love roly polys. They were my favorite when I was 5.

  • Reply Ronald Green July 26, 2019 at 6:13 am

    I love these little potato bugs, what I used to call them when I was a kid. I used to find them everywhere, especially underneath rocks.

  • Reply Ronald Green July 26, 2019 at 6:15 am

    Wish I could roll up into a ball like that! 😁 Lol 😁.

  • Reply Andrew justin July 26, 2019 at 7:44 am

    Insects such as bees, butterflies, crickets etc are just evolved crustaceans.

  • Reply Melvin Mondragon July 26, 2019 at 12:43 pm

    where in the world you get such amount of years????????????

  • Reply 君はゲイです君はゲイです July 26, 2019 at 12:49 pm

    I remember these bois!

  • Reply Craig Powell July 26, 2019 at 2:44 pm

    Never heard of any of those names that you've called it. They're called woodlice/woodlouse or chucky pigs here in England.

  • Reply Emman Mamaril July 27, 2019 at 1:05 am

    I see them in a new light… I prefer crustaceans over insects

  • Reply Cryo 329 July 27, 2019 at 1:35 am

    It's real Isopod hours

  • Reply zan cix July 27, 2019 at 1:45 am

    ima sue my teacher for saying rolliiiiii pooooolllis are bugs in kinder

  • Reply 【minqhtmizuiro】시안 색 July 27, 2019 at 2:38 am

    Woah that's kinda funny in the title

  • Reply boostedsil40 July 27, 2019 at 5:32 am

    if bugs were the size of large cats or small dogs you know dang well we would love them and have them as pets,could you imagine alking your 4 foot pill bug thats a gentle giant?

  • Reply Endangered YT July 27, 2019 at 4:24 pm

    If you’ve ever flipped one over and lightly touched its legs it’s like little hooks you should try it it grapples onto your finger

  • Reply Yenni Marroqui July 27, 2019 at 5:35 pm

    I call them rolly pollys and they are kinda cute

  • Reply Hyper 625 July 27, 2019 at 7:45 pm

    Wood bugs cause there were 100s of em in the wood when i was little in my daycare

  • Reply Thomas July 27, 2019 at 8:34 pm

    Its Woodlouse in england

  • Reply Peyton Coates July 28, 2019 at 6:10 am

    When I was little I would lift a rock or brick from the stairs and look for rolls pollies

  • Reply Dan R July 28, 2019 at 7:16 am

    Can't wait for us to live in Mars so we could say "Haaa take that Pill Bugs!"

  • Reply Kee Chow Ong July 28, 2019 at 12:16 pm

    the puppies of the giant isopod

  • Reply Ben Lee July 28, 2019 at 8:35 pm

    Yeah, Roly Polies are the only "insects" I can tolerate. Of course I couldn't hold 10 of em in my hand at once, but 1 is fine.

  • Reply Life with Bleona July 29, 2019 at 4:59 am

    I call them Butchy bois. I also love to hold them because in person they look kinds cute and they are harmless

  • Reply Matthew Peterson July 31, 2019 at 6:29 am

    I though the title said Rolls Royce instead so I watched this video in great confusion

  • Reply ella huruka July 31, 2019 at 9:23 am

    Deer : wow i love being land animals
    Human : me too
    Pill bugs : Shouting from afar IM ALOMST THERE

  • Reply Good GuyTj July 31, 2019 at 2:10 pm

    So if I put a Rollie pollie in water they can survive?

  • Reply Nicholas Horta July 31, 2019 at 3:56 pm

    My life has been a lie they are crustaceans not insects 😦

  • Reply BananaKingX July 31, 2019 at 5:08 pm

    These are the cutest things

  • Reply BananaKingX July 31, 2019 at 5:09 pm

    This is the only bug i will hold with releif

  • Reply jon brittingham July 31, 2019 at 6:59 pm

    Mabe they started on land and took over the sea.

  • Reply Chloe Pechlaner July 31, 2019 at 7:04 pm

    I mean, on them needing to stay in moist places so their gills dont dry out; we'd have the same issue with our lungs if they werent inside us, no? Granted, if the gills were inside the pillbug and it say… sucked air to them through a tube, itd basically be lungs, but evolution likes to mimic itself :p

  • Reply Gavin Andrade August 1, 2019 at 12:08 am

    I thought about this and if pill bugs can adapt from living in water t land can't humans adapt to live in water and breath water

  • Reply honeybun33 August 1, 2019 at 6:13 am

    I used to pick these up. And watch them ball up and then they would release themselves when the coast was clear. Rolliepollielivesmatter

  • Reply Perun August 1, 2019 at 3:17 pm

    I wonder if they taste like lobsters

  • Reply Oh Alexis August 1, 2019 at 5:23 pm

    I call em snacks

  • Reply Ethanotor Oculus August 1, 2019 at 10:09 pm

    May I have a discussion with this channel? There's something I'd really like to ask.

  • Reply Cali native Quiss August 2, 2019 at 3:02 am

    I used to play with them as kid back n the 90'z havent seen one sense😂

  • Reply Carlos. Posada August 2, 2019 at 5:15 am

    I like pills. I like pills bugs. I like bugs made of pills. Yum.

  • Reply king bilyger August 2, 2019 at 12:50 pm

    So did they success in their conquest?

  • Reply meep man August 2, 2019 at 12:59 pm

    Fish: i have gills so i can breathe where i live
    Pill bug: pethetic

  • Reply Li Za August 2, 2019 at 1:23 pm

    Why her voice sounds like billie eilish

  • Reply Weird Noodle August 3, 2019 at 2:11 am

    My childhood is gone

    I loved Roly polies 😢

  • Reply Outsidesquirrel August 3, 2019 at 4:59 am

    Prove to me that they come from the sea.

  • Reply Ashok Kumar August 3, 2019 at 6:59 am

    That means like cockroach ,cricket also take breadth with head from spiracles.?

  • Reply F.B.I August 3, 2019 at 9:05 am

    can they still breath in water

  • Reply subax3 rayy August 3, 2019 at 9:21 am

    The more you know

  • Reply DrMailManPHD /Unchartedleaf August 3, 2019 at 7:36 pm

    What is YouTube trying to tell me

  • Reply Ayo Q August 3, 2019 at 10:35 pm

    Isopods are the 💥. Ecosystem!!!

  • Reply Erin Meow August 3, 2019 at 11:18 pm

    We call them "slaters" in Western Australia

  • Reply Nini Mf August 4, 2019 at 12:42 am

    The only bug I wasn’t afraid of.

  • Reply temmeh tremmep August 4, 2019 at 2:10 am

    Soo can the also breathe underwater?

  • Reply purple derp August 4, 2019 at 2:49 am

    flashbacks to leapfrog rolly poly game

  • Reply Austin Jon August 4, 2019 at 12:26 pm

    I've always told people they are soil dwelling crustaceans. Just as a useless fact. I would always get weird looks.

  • Reply Danielle Denardo August 4, 2019 at 10:53 pm

    I have always loved folly Polly’s more than other bugs and didn’t know why while at the same time I love the ocean such as crustaceans and other sea animals now I know why I have always loved rolls pollys so much

  • Reply Wheeze Lord August 5, 2019 at 1:58 am

    These are the only crustacean that I trust as a friend

  • Reply Wheeze Lord August 5, 2019 at 1:59 am

    I've been lied to my whole life but with a name like pill bugs it's not really scary

  • Reply L YB August 5, 2019 at 2:49 am

    In south korea we call them 공벌레(gongbeolle) or 콩벌레(kongbeolle) which means ball bug or bean(probably pea) bug

  • Reply Laborer in the field August 5, 2019 at 3:05 am

    Amazing creations of God!

  • Reply Laborer in the field August 5, 2019 at 3:06 am

    Why they keep teaching kids about evolution…it is a theory proven wrong over and over again…what's the deal with this big lie.

  • Reply Kevlar Vrus 57 August 5, 2019 at 9:57 pm

    Nobody remembers the roly polie cartoons.

  • Reply SilverFoxStudios August 5, 2019 at 10:32 pm

    oh my god, im a murderer. i cant even count the amount of times ive caged these up in a dry grassy turtle cage.

  • Reply TyrranicalT-Rad August 6, 2019 at 2:27 am

    Land SCRIMPS

  • Reply BOI Animations August 6, 2019 at 3:23 pm

    I Never Kill These things cause I mean,
    What did they Do to us,I Always Catch These things on my wall when I Go feed my Doggos,I just let them crawl up on my arm,I would Sometimes Let then come inside

  • Reply TheDaffiestDandelion August 6, 2019 at 6:23 pm

    Me: reads title

  • Reply knuckle sammich August 7, 2019 at 4:40 am

    Some of them have a very long parasitic worm.

  • Reply David W August 7, 2019 at 5:44 am

    I use to call them Rollie Pollie Ollies but for now on I shall call them LaNd ShRiMp

  • Reply Heart The Eternal August 7, 2019 at 8:34 am

    You left out the fact that they love to eat and live in dog poop. (Or any feces for that matter).

  • Reply Andy Thao August 7, 2019 at 11:49 am

    I would always catch these as a little kid and make them race eachother.

  • Reply gacha malicaevil wolf gammer August 7, 2019 at 6:22 pm

    Maybe bec their soooo cute

  • Reply EM Nemesis August 8, 2019 at 2:37 pm

    Back when I was a toddler, I used to find them under rocks and piles of cut wood.

  • Reply mini keanu August 8, 2019 at 4:51 pm

    who tf calls them pill bugs bruh I called them wood lice

  • Reply Bella Mejares August 11, 2019 at 1:32 am

    pill bug is cute

  • Reply J2 The Rich Boy August 12, 2019 at 12:40 am

    Kinda Reminds me Of the Isopods

  • Reply Lemontarts01 August 13, 2019 at 7:44 am

    Sooo cute!

  • Reply Tony Starks August 14, 2019 at 2:36 pm

    So they taste like shrimp huh🤔

  • Reply Jeta-Maria Swanepoel August 14, 2019 at 4:29 pm

    Why must human devour even these little ones? Nothing on earth is sacred to a human!

  • Reply *Daniel* *Ciufu* August 15, 2019 at 1:49 pm

    I used to find pill bugs all the time and play with them when i was 5-6. Now i cant find one single pill bug anymore 🙁

  • Reply FireIsTheCIeanser August 17, 2019 at 6:09 pm

    I love your videos but please stop using crickets as examples when talking about insects. They terrify me lol

  • Reply 1cetea August 17, 2019 at 6:47 pm

    These bugs are literally just small armadillos

  • Reply T Raw August 18, 2019 at 9:33 am

    MY WHOLE LIFE HAS BEEN A LIE LOL JK. All of this is new to me! I’ve always loved Rollie pollies.

  • Reply fck fracking August 20, 2019 at 5:50 am

    Hmmm I never knew any of this about pill bugs. Man now I feel bad when I pick up a rock and don’t put it back and leave these things unable to even breath.

  • Reply Tri puji August 21, 2019 at 8:54 am

    Looks like sea ishopod ?

  • Reply bobby walsh August 22, 2019 at 3:58 am

    Why I call marbles

  • Reply Failed_ K August 22, 2019 at 7:20 am

    There is probably someone out there who, after watching this video, tries to see if the Pill Bugs could breathe underwater

  • Reply Diep creep August 22, 2019 at 10:07 am


  • Reply Jake Eisner August 22, 2019 at 11:54 am

    I love this things so much

  • Reply Chris Wild August 22, 2019 at 4:23 pm

    We call the Woodlice in the UK.

  • Reply loser head August 22, 2019 at 8:19 pm

    In the UK we call them woodlice

  • Reply Kitty Rose August 25, 2019 at 3:39 pm

    cough cough– wood lice.

  • Reply FBI INVESTMENT August 26, 2019 at 12:40 am

    Girl calls them cute

    Rolly Polly's:am I a joke to you?

  • Reply PistolPupYT August 26, 2019 at 2:18 pm

    Roly polies came from the sea to conquer the earth
    The sea is on the earth..

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