Meet The Toe Biter Beetle (Leave The Sandals At Home)
Imagine you’re wading in a pond with your friends as a kid… the muck oozing in between your toes, and little bugs skirting the top of the water. All of a sudden, you get a sharp pain on your toe. Is it really your worst nightmare come true? A swamp beast rising up from the depths to eat you alive, starting with your toe?
Nah. It’s not that bad. It’s just a massive beetle-thing lurking around in the dark wetness, waiting to chomp on your feet.
Meet the Toe Biter Beetle, the giant water bug who packs a giant water bug bite. Don’t worry though: it’ll hurt like heck, but at least you’ll make it out alive!
Where Are These Giant Water Bug Monstrosities Found?
The Toe Biter bug is found mostly in areas that have very wet seasons, such as Atlanta, Georgia in the past few years.
They’re native to southern Canada. You’ll also find them in ponds and lakes all over the U.S.A.
When people get bitten by the giant water bug, they’re generally in a creek, or the shallows of a lake. You can also find them in streams, and even some large puddles. Basically any body of water that’s fresh, and that has the potential for human toes.
They Are The Largest Aquatic Insects On Earth
Scientifically known as Belostomatidae, the Toe Biter is also known as an alligator tick, and alligator flea. They can ready up to two and a half inches long.
They lurk just underneath the surface of ponds and lakes. However, they’ve also been known to be found in ditches and even pools sometimes! The giant water bug’s incredible (and intimidating) size makes it seem like it’s probably the biggest bug in the world. However, it can’t quite claim that prize.
The Toe Biter is actually the largest aquatic insect on Earth. But the largest insect in general goes to the Queen Alexandra’s Birdwing. This breathtaking butterfly can reach up to 11 inches wide from tip to tip of their wings!
Do They Really Bite??
Yes! They really bite. And apparently the bite is just horrific! In fact, this guy said that he’d rather be bitten by an alligator than a toe biter! If that doesn’t tell you how awful their bite is, I don’t know what will.
The bite of this creepy-yet-cool insect is strong and awful. It has a ‘beak’ which penetrates its victims, and injects digestive juices. If the unfortunate recipient of said juices tries to get away, the Toe Biter uses its front legs to seize food, hold it in place, and then inject the lethal chomp.
The giant Toe Biter’s bite isn’t lethal to humans. However, it will basically turn the insides of its other prey (insects, frogs, and sometimes even baby ducks) into mush. Then it sucks up the mush… sometimes while they prey is still partly alive.
And in case you’re interested in more pond-related nightmares, here are some pics for you to enjoy of this super creepy bug!
And if you want to follow along with this cringe-worthy water bug, check out the hashtag on Instagram… but be warned! Nightmares may ensue!