Hello folks who wonder if dentists handing out candy during Halloween can be considered a possible conflict of interest,

The internet is filled with weird, strange and disturbing stuff that someone detached from our culture would find appalling. Yet, as we read, these videos have millions of views. Why are you acting all salty, Karan?

No, I am not, I am simply stating that at one point we emphasize that we should show sympathy and empathy towards others but we end up doing the opposite. If someone is going to shoot themselves in the foot, we should take the first step and empty the bullets from their gun. On the other hand, we have people going gaga over watching people in tears while eating "burn your esophagus hot" wings and following people around who deliberately get stung and bitten with everything moving under the sun and shout expletives into the camera about the intensity of pain they are experiencing.

Anyone who knows me even a little bit, knows I just can't help myself from randomly picking up critters who just want to go on with their daily life. That said, I am usually cautious (lol!) about picking up stuff whose temperament I am not aware of or if they could pack quite a punch. Case in point, is the harmless California Lady Beetle which would file a restraining order against me if it could.

So when I spotted this Velvet Ant, I held back my eager fingers from picking it up.


These velvet ants are not ants, but solitary wasps. I don't know if evolution has favorites, if it does, this one certainly fits the bill to be one of the most endowed insects in terms of defenses. Apart from being incredibly fast on their feet, these wasps will make a squeaking noise when picked up that sounds like a baby insect crying (how heartless does one have to be to still keep on holding it). In addition, despite looking all fuzzy and soft to touch, their armor is extremely tough and hard to pierce. They use their mandibles (mouthparts) to hold on to its target before taking out their ultimate weapon.

Below is the velvet ant locking its mandible to a twig I used to test its bite.

But if you are concerned about the bite, you have bigger fish to fry. You see, the sting of the velvet ant is among the most painful stings from insects. This is because they use the venom to parasitize other insects. The venom is delivered through a stinger which also functions as an egg-laying organ. Even though the sting is extremely painful for humans, there are no long term effects except an unpleasant Instagram story.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Did you learn something new in this post? Let us know in the comments below


acorns adventure adventures algae alligator american crow ant cricket ants aphids aquatic snails arachnids argentine ants bananas bark beetles barklice barnacles bats beaver bees beetle beetles bird lice birds black-tailed deer bloodworms bristletail bug bugs bumblebee butterflies calicoflower canada goose cardinal carpenter bees carrots caterpillars cave centipede cockroaches coot corvids court case crabs crawfish crayfish cricket crickets crow crustaceans damselflies death deer diatoms dock dragonflies earwigs eggs egrets elephant seals european starlings eyes ferns fingerprints fishes flea flies floods florida flowers fly freshwater snail frog frogs fundraiser fungus fungus-eating lady beetles galls geckos geese goats goldfinch gophers grasshopper green dock beetle green heron green lacewing guest post gull harvestmen hawks herons hike history honeybees house sparrows india insects isopods jumping bristletails jumping spiders juncos katydid kayak lacewing lady beetles land snails leaf miners leafhopper lice lichens lizard lizards lynx spider maggots Magpie mallow marsh megabats midges mildew millipede mites moles mosquito moths mouse spider nematodes nettles newt newts night nuthatches oaks owl paper wasps parasite part 2 pavement ants pelicans pigeons pill bugs plants pocket gophers pollen pollination pollinators poppy praying mantis pseudopupil pupa quail rabbits rat roach roadkill rove beetles salamander salmon sandpiper scat scorpion Scorpions sea lions sea otters seals seeds shorebird shrimp silverfish skunk snails snakes social media solifuges sparrows spider spiders springtails squirrel squirrels starlings stilts stinger sun spiders surf scoter swallows tarantula termites thrips ticks towhees trees turkey turkey vulture turtle venom vernal pool vultures warblers wasps water boatmen webspinners whales wildflower wolf spider woodpeckers Wren wrens yellow jackets youtube

Featured Post

The case of the missing grasshopper

Hello folks who wonder if crime does not pay well at least the benefits are hard to dismiss, This case is about Gregory , a band-winged Gras...