The Billywig is an insect native to Australia. It is rated XXX, and is around half an inch long with the colouring of a vivid sapphire blue. The speed of the Billywig means that it is rarely noticed by Muggles, and wizards and witches only spot it once they have been stung.
The Billywig's wings are attached to the top of its head, and the wings rotate extremely fast, spinning the Billywig so that it can fly. Xenophilius Lovegood used Billywig wings for his recreation of Rowena Ravenclaw's Diadem because he believed they "induce an elevated frame of mind". The Billywig also has a long, thin stinger at the bottom of its body. Anyone stung by a Billywig will suffer giddiness, followed by levitation, and this is what gives the Billywig its rating of XXX. This is also why young Australian wizards and witches try to catch Billywigs and provoke them into stinging them. Too many stings, however, can cause the victim to hover uncontrollably for days on end. Sometimes, the victim will suffer from a severe allergic reaction, and permanent floating may ensue.
Dried Billywig stingers are used in several potions, and are believed to be a component in Fizzing Whizzbees.
Behind the scenes
- In the fifty-second edition of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, in response to the entry about their usage as ingredients in Fizzing Whizzbees, Harry Potter or Ron Weasley wrote in the page's margin, "last time I eat them".
- Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (video game) (PS1 version only) (Mentioned only)
- Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (video game)
- Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them