Adapted to vacuum conditions, Space Weevils were considered pests and vermin by the Space Corps and the JMC, due to them being commonly found stowed away in the cargo bays of spaceships, where they will eat supplies if left unchecked.
Red Dwarf apparently had little problem with Space Weevils, possibly due to the evolving Felis sapiens aboard in the last three million years that kept them in check. Starbug however had problems with Space Weevils; once one of them ate all the 'Bugs corn supply, and much later Cat was hunted one aboard Red Dwarf itself.
Apparently descended from the (much smaller) Weevils on Earth, Space Weevils are approximately six inches in length, with a segmented body and two small antennae. They can also appear more rounded and bulbous.
Kryten killed and cooked a space weevil for Lister's dinner, when the weevils had eaten the last of Starbug's corn supply. The weevils were the only type of meat still available, but despite being considered vermin were still nutritious, since they had been "corn-fed". Rimmer was convinced that even Lister would notice the difference, but all Lister was disgusted by was the salad served alongside. He described the weevil as "delicious", thinking it was a crunchy king prawn. Rimmer considered that eating the weevil was tantamount to cannibalism for Lister. ("Legion")
Still aboard Starbug, Lister, trying to act more mature around Kristine Kochanski, later refused to eat a space weevil when he thought that Kryten had caught and cooked another one. He explained that his mouth was not prepared to consume anything that scuttled or that had ever been a cartoon character. Kryten had actually found a lobster in stasis aboard SS Centauri which he had cooked as it was the fifth anniversary of his rescue from Nova 5. ("Beyond a Joke")
Over a decade later, Cat was on the prowl, doing some late-night hunting seeking to kill a space weevil that had somehow got aboard Red Dwarf and was scuttling around one of the decks (perhaps it came aboard from an earlier derelict they encountered such as SS Trojan, or another possibility is that when the nanobots rebuilt the ship in "Nanarchy" they also resurrected some old space weevils along with the crew). The Cat hoped to swat the space weevil with a paperback book, but it kept outsmarting him. Kryten said this was because space weevils have an I.Q. of 2. ("Entangled")
- Rimmer: Not even Lister with his single remaining tastebud will knowingly eat insectoid vermin. I mean, let's face it; with him it's practically cannibalism.
Lister: Oh great, didn't think we had any crunchy king prawn left. ("Legion")
- Kryten: You're up late Sir.
Cat: Been hunting, trying to swat this damn Space Weevil. One minute it's there, the next minute it's gone, it's driving me crazy. Little sucker keeps outsmarting me!
Kryten: Well, they do have an IQ of 2, Sir. ("Entangled")
- It is never stated whether Space Weevils are a result of natural evolution, mutation, or genetically engineered. Given that the Space Weevil ate all Starbug's corn supply, it is possible that it may have been an enlarged form of the real-life Wheat Weevil (Sitophilus granarius). It does however not have the elongated snout of the wheat weevil, instead resembling a beetle.
- It is possible that Space Weevils and Rodents were a staple diet of the Felis sapiens which evolved in Red Dwarf over three million years.
- ↑ DVD commentary