(HealthyResearch.com) – Remember the buzz about the murder hornet? That dangerous winged beast that had a killer sting and attempted to demolish the honeybee population? Well, there’s a pesky little critter that may drive a little more fear into those afraid of winged insects. It’s named the assassin bug.
Sounds scary, doesn’t it? Well, it’s actually quite common, but you need to take a little caution. Here’s why.
Where Do They Hide Out?
Assassin bugs have made their way to the southern part of the U.S., including California and Texas. Global warming has pushed them further north.
These bugs make nests near rodents, particularly in wooded areas. They are attracted to bright lights, so they flock to porches and lamp posts at night. They can make their way into homes and tuck back behind mattresses and wood frames.
Assassin bugs venture out at night for food and sleep during the day. Unlike murder hornets, which live outside, these buggers can shack up in your personal space.
What Do Assassin Bugs Look Like?
These bugs are about an inch long and are dark brown and black. They have flat backs that showcase red dots, similar to a polka dot pattern. Their wings and sticky legs allow them to get into small crevices easily and quickly.
Also nicknamed the kissing bug, they love to fly into your face, especially the lips, which they tend to bite when irritated. While murder hornets fly, too, they tend to stay outdoors near bees or flower gardens.
Watch Your Eyes!
The assassin bug loves to be close to its prey. This includes you and your pets. In addition to biting near the mouth, they can attack the eyes, too (yikes!).
They use their vertebrae to suck blood from their victims. The result? Small red welts that mark up the skin, leading to swelling, irritation and inflammation on the face or bite site.
Comparatively, the sting of a murder hornet is severe, and unlike the assassin bug, they insert venom rather than suck blood.
Do Assassin Bugs Really Pose a Threat?
Aside from the sting and irritation they leave behind, assassin bugs can also cause extreme harm through disease. Their feces often contains a parasite that causes Chagas disease. Chagas attacks major organs and can be difficult to diagnose. If left untreated, it can be life-threatening.
From murder hornets to kissing bugs, the outdoors can seem like a scary place. As long as you keep your home tightened up and make sure screens are sealed properly, the risk of attack by a mob of crazy insects is minimal. Knowing how to identify the assassin bug is the first step in staying safe and preventing an unforeseen infestation.
~Here’s to Your Health & Safety!
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