Bugs, Insects & Creepy Crawlies

Kingsize Wombat

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Noticing fewer insects? You are not alone!

The Insect Apocalypse Is Here
What does it mean for the rest of life on Earth?

Sune Boye Riis was on a bike ride with his youngest son, enjoying the sun slanting over the fields and woodlands near their home north of Copenhagen, when it suddenly occurred to him that something about the experience was amiss. Specifically, something was missing.
It was summer. He was out in the country, moving fast. But strangely, he wasn’t eating any bugs.

Because insects are legion, inconspicuous and hard to meaningfully track, the fear that there might be far fewer than before was more felt than documented. People noticed it by canals or in backyards or under streetlights at night — familiar places that had become unfamiliarly empty. The feeling was so common that entomologists developed a shorthand for it, named for the way many people first began to notice that they weren’t seeing as many bugs. They called it the windshield phenomenon.

In Britain, as many as 30 to 60 percent of species were found to have diminishing ranges. Larger trends were harder to pin down, though a 2014 review in Science tried to quantify these declines by synthesizing the findings of existing studies and found that a majority of monitored species were declining, on average by 45 percent.
https://www.nytimes.com/2018/11/27/magazine/insect-apocalypse.html
 

Anonymous-50446

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Been like this for some years now. Worrying.
True. Used to have to scrape the dead bugs off the Scimitar wind-screen after a summer evening run home. Hardly ever hit one these days.
 

ramonmercado

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200! That's a lot of venom.

A Chinese man has been caught trying to smuggle around 200 venomous scorpions out of Sri Lanka.

The live animals were discovered by security officials at Colombo airport, packed in plastic boxes. Authorities suggest the man may have been planning to extract the venom from the scorpions once in China. The man who was apprehended by customs officials on Monday was fined 100,000 rupees ($550, £423) and allowed to return home.

Fighting the trafficking of exotic wildlife and the smuggling of gold and illegal drugs has become a major challenge for Sri Lanka.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-51090102
 

AmCuriousNJ

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200! That's a lot of venom.

A Chinese man has been caught trying to smuggle around 200 venomous scorpions out of Sri Lanka.

The live animals were discovered by security officials at Colombo airport, packed in plastic boxes. Authorities suggest the man may have been planning to extract the venom from the scorpions once in China. The man who was apprehended by customs officials on Monday was fined 100,000 rupees ($550, £423) and allowed to return home.

Fighting the trafficking of exotic wildlife and the smuggling of gold and illegal drugs has become a major challenge for Sri Lanka.

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-51090102
Though scorpions are somewhat scary and such, I can't help but fell sorry for the scorpions in this case, because they were not doing anything by themselves to harm anyone. If they were to get loose and harm people, then it would be this man's fault.
 

ramonmercado

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Jumping Spiders arrive in Ireland.

In what is believed to be the first sighting in Ireland, a jumping spider has been spotted in a Dublin garden.

The 'Philaeus Chrysops' is just a few milimetres long and is usually found in countries with a warmer climate.

Collie Ennis, a researcher at Trinity College's Zoology Department, says they may jump on prey but they are harmless to humans.

"A lot of times you expect to see these imported on plants but when you see them outside that indicates that they are moving in naturally, so to speak," said Mr Ennis.

https://www.irishexaminer.com/break...n-believed-to-be-first-in-ireland-977426.html
 

ravensocks

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Jumping Spiders arrive in Ireland.

In what is believed to be the first sighting in Ireland, a jumping spider has been spotted in a Dublin garden.

The 'Philaeus Chrysops' is just a few milimetres long and is usually found in countries with a warmer climate.

Collie Ennis, a researcher at Trinity College's Zoology Department, says they may jump on prey but they are harmless to humans.

"A lot of times you expect to see these imported on plants but when you see them outside that indicates that they are moving in naturally, so to speak," said Mr Ennis.

https://www.irishexaminer.com/break...n-believed-to-be-first-in-ireland-977426.html
You find the black and white zebra ones in Scotland. Admittedly mostly indoors, but still...
 

Cochise

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This whole thing depressed me so much this morning I reckon I have at long last sworn off all news (and I was down to only scanning the paper anyway, just in case some edict had come out). The world is far too full of insanity. How people find the energy to hate other people (let alone whole categories of other people) I have no idea. I've cheered up a bit since as I have been thinking about insects. So there we are.
When I was living in the US and trying to learn about what could kill me (this was a couple of decades ago so I'm talking snakes, bears etc, not humans) I read a book on American insects. Don't. it's bloody fortunate most insects are so small. After that I used to look on the Copperhead snakes that lived in a corner of our garden as a nice friendly family who meant no-one any harm.
 

feinman

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When I was living in the US and trying to learn about what could kill me (this was a couple of decades ago so I'm talking snakes, bears etc, not humans) I read a book on American insects. Don't. it's bloody fortunate most insects are so small. After that I used to look on the Copperhead snakes that lived in a corner of our garden as a nice friendly family who meant no-one any harm.
I was in an Outward Bound course in the Rockies when I was about 20, and a girl was bitten on the neck the first night by a brown recluse while she slept. Her Neck swelled up to twice its width, her head cocked off to the side. She didn't die, but the course was over for her.
 

Xanatic*

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In the context of racism, we better point out that a brown recluse is a type of spider.
 

Analogue Boy

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Are we really discussing racism in terms of spiders now?
 

Swifty

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Sea slug:
The Creator (of any religion, take your pick) must have been bored and couldn't really be bothered the day this creature was created.
 
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UK's biggest fly that feasts on blood spotted on Arran

A gruesome creature with a bite that can tear human skin was spotted on a holidaymaker's car door handle while visiting a Scottish island.
The Dark Giant Horsefly, which can grow up to 5cm long, is the largest fly in the UK and needs a meal of blood before it produces offspring.

Link with photos
https://www.barrheadnews.com/news/18671270.uks-biggest-fly-feasts-blood-spotted-arran/


Here's a video not connected with the above story, but showing how big Tabanus sudeticus can get.

 

Mythopoeika

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blessmycottonsocks

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I was distracted from my work just now by something tapping at my conservatory window.

I saw a flash of brilliant green/yellow go past and saw that it was a very large dragonfly.

Grabbed my phone and tried to photograph the beastie.
Unfortunately, it wouldn't pose nicely, but kept swooping backwards and forwards across my decking.

Managed a couple of blurry shots before it disappeared over my garden wall.

Its body length seemed to be just over half the width of my decking boards, which I know are 145mm in width.
This suggests a body length of around 8 cm for the dragonfly which, according to the British Dragonfly Society, is close to the maximum known size in the UK.

I've noticed small, iridescent blue dragonfiles in my garden before, but nothing as dramatic as this one!

https://british-dragonflies.org.uk/odonata/frequently-asked-questions/#:~:text=In the UK dragonflies reach,the UK are the Demoiselles.

Dragonfly1.JPG
dragonfly2.JPG
 
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uair01

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That reminds me:
My wife said: I saw a moth on the balcony and it had a very long sucker and it was flitting from flower to flower like a hummingbird.
Then the next day I saw it too. It was otherworldly.
After finding it on Wikipedia it seems to be very common. I had never seen it before:

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hummingbird_hawk-moth
 
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