Monday, May 27, 2013


by kathyz, This post originally appeared at Function of a Rubber Duck.

Monster insects. Seems like an oxymoron, right?

Well, here goes a short blurb from an issue of the Globe and Mail:
“One of the most ferocious insects you’ve ever heard of – it’s the size of a quarter – is set to invade Florida this summer,” reports Live Science. The Sunshine State can expect to see an explosion of shaggy-haired gallinippers, a type of giant mosquito. “As insects go, gallinippers are particularly formidable. Their eggs lie dormant for years, awaiting the floodwaters that will enable them to hatch. Even in their larval stage, gallinippers are so tough they’ll eat tadpoles and other small aquatic prey. And as adults, the voracious pests feed day and night. .. Their bodies are strong enough to bite through clothing, and they’re known to go after pets, wild animals and even fish.”
Psorophora ciliata  gallinippers  compared to Asian tiger moquito
(To the left is the gallinipper; on the right is a typical mosquito.)
Wow. You wouldn’t want to see those around! I then did some more research on my own and found out that…
- fortunately, only female gallinippers bite. Male gallinippers drink flower nectar instead!
- usually, their large size gives away their presence when they are about to bite a human. However, those who were bitten reveal that the bites felt like stabs.
- also due to their large size, some insect repellents won’t even work on them!
Finally, we are lucky that in BC the weather is not ideal for these creatures to live in. However, be warned that this summer might not be the best time to go to Disneyland!

About this contributor: Kathyz is an idoyncratic gr10 student who loves playing the piano, flute and violin and enjoys reading historical fiction and Edgar Allan Poe. She completes jigsaw puzzles in her spare time and aspires to learn Latin as well as publish a children's book in the near future.

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