What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Trying to identify bug in pool
Location: Martinique
November 22, 2014 10:00 am
Can you help identify what this is please ?
I found it swimming in our pool after a few days of heavy rains.
Signature: Matthew

Backswimmers

Backswimmers

Dear Matthew,
These aquatic true bugs are Backswimmers in the family Notonectidae.  According to BugGuide they are:  “Aquatic bugs that often swim upside-down. When resting at the surface, body is typically tilted with the head downward”
and they “Prey on other aquatic insects and sometimes on small vertebrates.”  Backswimmers can fly, which enables them to seek a new home if their pond dries out.  We don’t know what would have caused them to relocate to your pool after the rains.

Daniel,
Thank you very much for your reply.
Fantastic info. My son has taken matters into his own hands and relocated them to another improvised pool. They’re doing well.
Can they fly far ? Perhaps the winds carried them a little further than normal.
Also, my pool is a salt based pool rather than chlorine, would that allow them to survive better than in the latter ?

Dear Matthew,
Since Backswimmers are predators, they will not remain in a body of water that does not provide a food supply.  Insects will not live in a chlorinated pool, but many insects will fall into the water.  Backswimmers are air breathers, and if the chlorine is not strong, we imagine they can survive in a chlorinated pool.  We also believe there are some species that can inhabit brackish water, which is a blend of fresh and salt water.  They can fly considerable distances.

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What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination
Location: Martinique

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