Posts Tagged ‘tarantula hawk wasp’

Just a Neighborhood BUG!

July 5, 2009

tarantula hawk 002

Keeve brought this up to me while I was sewing in the loft….. a comfy, little plastic home for his new bug.  A gigantic bug with red wings.  Of course he asked me what it was.  “I have no idea!”  I suggested looking up “red winged beetle” on google.  He couldn’t find it.  So Austin and Keeve sat at the kitchen table inspecting the big bug (and shaking the container, of course).  They did this for a long time and were very observant while noting the ‘bum movements’ and the pincers on the head.

Later last night we mentioned the big bug with red wings and my brilliant niece, Whitney, said, “OH!  I think that is a tarantula hawk wasp!”  She’s so smart.  So we looked THAT us on google and BINGO!  It is.

Aren’t the antennae in perfect curly-ques?  This is a nice photo by Paul Nylander (almost Nikander, my maiden name).  This bug is obviously dead because one of the traits of this tarantula hawk wasp is that they have a sting rated among the most painful in the insect world.  I found this enlightening explanation from a man who was stung, “…immediate, excruciating pain that simply shuts down one’s ability to do anything, except, perhaps, scream. Mental discipline simply does not work in these situations.”  Cool, huh?  The article also said the bug hardly ever stings without provocation….. hmmmmm, would that be like shaking the container???

THAT is why it is securely masking taped to the kitchen table… so as not to sting anyone.  I don’t like screaming.