As we were walking out of the house Sunday morning to go out to breakfast, Tim pointed to my right. I glanced to my right fully expecting to see a bunny or a squirrel or even a lizard doing something cute. But all I saw were my many pots of flowers, our patio chairs and the grill.
"What is it that I'm supposed to be seeing?" I asked, squinting a little bit.
I was told to look further to my right. Well further to my right is the house. So I looked at the house. Yup that's a house all right. In fact, it's our house. Still unsure of what it is that I am clearly not seeing, I looked at Tim and shrugged with a look of confusion on my face.
"The window screen" Tim said softly, "Look at the window screen" So I looked at the window screen. Or screens. The front window of the house is a bay window so there are several windows to check out. All screened of course.
Finally I spied it. And may I just say, "Holy Cats! It was a bug. Not just any bug actually but a Big doggone Bug. In fact I believe it is the biggest bug I've ever seen! What the heck is this thing?
To get the proportion right here is a photo of the bug next to a car key.
How did I not notice this myself? I mean a bug that size is not exactly subtle. But it was quiet and well behaved. And sometimes I am absolutely oblivious to my surroundings. Sad but true.
I was both fascinated and totally creeped out. As you well know, I have a kind of a "thing" about bugs. And the sheer size of this one just took it to a whole new level. On the one hand, I couldn't stop marveling over it. On the other hand, Ewwwww. Although I will admit that it's wings were very pretty. From the looking through the screen from the inside so that the bug was mostly in sillhouette, the wings were especially pretty.
I could have alternately gagged and goggled over this fly for a lot longer, but poor Tim was hungry and moving toward Hangry and so we continued on our way to our Sunday breakfast out. When we got home, the bug was gone. I was both disappointed and relieved. Yes, I know, I am an excercise in contradiction.
But I did have my photographs so I started researching. Of course I did. I wanted to know what this enormous bug is! So I googled large flying Florida insects and honestly I have never been so grossed out in my life and still so fascinated at the same time.
There are so many of them! In my desire to identify this one particular bug, I was particular in my search. It was easy to eliminate some of them quickly because just from the body shape, I knew they were in the wasp family and this one absolutely is not. I don't know much, but I do know that.
So in narrowing down the search further, there were too many that simply were not big enough. Tim's car key is 2 3/4 inches long (I know because I measured it) And the bug, from the top of it's head to the tip of it's wings was about the same length. And then there were those really long wings. Not very many bugs had wings that same shape and size. Hmmmmm, And then there is it's kind of blocky, squatty shaped body. It appears to be amoured like a beetle, so some sort of winged beetle maybe?
I get very science-ish when I'm in reseach mode and the grossosity of the bugness of it all stopped bothering me after a bit. I kept thinking that it looked like the dinosaur of all bugs. Hopefully a brontosaurus and not a tyrannosaurus. Yikes! After all was said and done though, it was still a bug and once I stopped being research Sam and was back to just being regular Sam, bugs were ick to me once again.
In short, I spent a ridiculous amount of time trying to identify this particular bug to no avail. I still have no idea what it is, why it was here or what it wants. Perhaps our front window screen was just a rest stop on it's journey elsewhere. I am kind of hoping that is the case.
I have never in seen a bug like this before and with any luck at all, I never will again. It's probably completely benign. Just some sort of extremely large but harmless plant eating bug that was on it's way to a vacation in Miami or something and took a little break on it's way. On the other hand, it might be a zombified human eating bug that was on it's way to meet up with it's brethren to make their plans to take over the world. Who knows?
Either way both, wow and ick.
My life is never dull.
Yup, this is me. Some people said, "Sam, you should write a Blog". "Well, there's a thought", I thought to myself. And so here it is.