Currently viewing the tag: "unnecessary carnage"
Insects are prone to unnecessary slaughter, be it from an overzealous homemaker who doesn't want to see bugs, or from a strapping he-man who is a closet arachnophobe, or from a youngster who likes to torture. At any rate, we get a goodly amount of photos of poor arthropods whose lives ended prematurely. In an effort to educate, we present Unnecessary Carnage. This page is not intended for the squeemish.

Subject: sergio
Location: Culiacan, Sinaloa, Mexico
December 17, 2014 6:18 pm
hi i found this bug flying around my room, i killed it becouse i really never saw anything like this before, at fist i thought it was stick bug, but im not sure.
Signature: sergio

Thread Legged Bug

Thread-Legged Bug

Dear Sergio,
This Thread-Legged Bug is a predatory Assassin Bug in the subfamily Emesinae, and though they might bite a human if carelessly handled, they are not considered dangerous.  Since they are predators, they are considered beneficial.  We hope you refrain from future Unnecessary Carnage now that you know this is not a harmful insect.  See BugGuide for additional information on Thread-Legged Bugs.

December 15, 2014
Book Review:  A Huntsman Spider in My House by Michelle Ray and illustrated by Sylvie Ashford
We quickly jumped on the opportunity to review Michelle Ray’s new children’s book and we are pleased to endorse the message it conveys.  The home does contain many unwelcome pests, but there are also many beneficial species that either accidentally or purposely find themselves inside.  Huntsman Spiders are common in Australia, and they are generally considered benign creatures that do no harm to human inhabitants, yet they are frequently subject to unnecessary carnage because they are large and scary appearing to the uninformed public.  The young, nameless female protagonist of Sylvie Ashford’s charming book speaks in rhyme as she explains the habits of Huntsman Spiders to children as well as to the adults that read the book aloud.  Our personal favorite of all of Sylvie Ashford’s colorful illustrations is the one that accompanies the text “I could squash him with my shoe, but he’s not hurting me.”  We thoroughly endorse educating young children to have more tolerance for the lower beasts in hope of reducing Unnecessary Carnage.  This book is suitable for young children learning to read and it has particular relevance for Australian children.  This book is a nice stocking stuffer.

Unnecessary Carnage averted:  "I could squash him with my shoe, but he's not hurting me."  Illustration by Sylvie Ashford

Unnecessary Carnage averted: “I could squash him with my shoe, but he’s not hurting me.” Illustration by Sylvie Ashford

Subject: Huntsman Spider Children’s Book Review Request
November 29, 2014 12:43 am
Hi Daniel
I hope you are well.
My name is Michelle Ray and I am a childrens author from Sydney, Australia.
I would like to ask if you would consider writing an honest review on your blog of my new children’s picture book titled ‘A Huntsman Spider In My House’ for 0-5 years, it is educational, charmingly illustrated and fun.
I would love to send you a copy.
I love your blog, book and ethos and support your efforts to promote the life of bugs and spiders of course!
If you are willing, I will pop one in the post to you – please let me know where to send it and if you have any other thoughts.
I hope to hear from you,
best wishes,
Michelle Ray
Signature: Michelle Ray

Subject: Giant termite? No idea
Location: Pasadena, CA
December 5, 2014 9:22 am
Found this crawling near the air return inside my house. Unfortunately my wife killed it before I coild jar it. It was about the size of my thumb. Huge head and distinct eyes. Had a water issue in my garage and notice some damp wood looking termites but and signs of dry wood termite droppings on some rafters too. House is 100 years old. Is this big a termite? Do they get this big??!!!
Signature: Walter

Potato Bug Carnage

Potato Bug Carnage

Dear Walter,
This is not a Termite.  Your wife has squashed a Southern California icon known as a Potato Bug.  Potato Bugs are subterranean dwellers related to crickets and grasshoppers.  Often the first heavy rains of the season drive them to the surface where they are encountered by people who are often quite startled upon seeing such a large, distinctive, almost humanoid creature for the first time.  Potato Bugs are not dangerous to humans, though they do have strong mandibles that could deliver a painful nip if they are carelessly handled.  We are tagging this an Unnecessary Carnage because we feel squashing Potato Bugs is an extreme reaction.

Subject: I found this spider 4 times
Location: Botswana, palapye
October 24, 2014 1:52 pm
I just want to know it’s dangerous or not… It moves very fast.
Signature: Don’t know



This is a Solifugid, and though they are commonly called Camel Spiders or Sun Spiders, and though they are Arachnids, they are not true spiders.  They do not have venom, but a large individual might bite a human, and they have powerful mandibles.  Solifugids are fierce predators, and we would encourage you to allow them to keep your surroundings clear of unwanted insects like Cockroaches.  As it appears the individual in your image has bee sprayed with insecticide, we are tagging this posting as Unnecessary Carnage.

What killed the Hanging Thief???

What killed the Hanging Thief???

Subject: large Mosquioto like thing
Location: Mobile Bay, Mobile, AL
October 10, 2014 10:59 am
Do you have any idea what this guy is? I would hate for it to bite me.
Signature: tonyh

Hi Tonyh,
This is a predatory Robber Fly in the genus
Diogmites, and members of the genus are commonly called Hanging Thieves.  We personally think that Hanging Thieves look much better living than dead.  Hanging Thieves are adept predators that take prey on the wing, and they often feed on large stinging insects like wasps.  Though we would not discount the possibility of being bitten by a Hanging Thief, we have never received any reports of such a bite and from all we have read, Hanging Thieves are not interested in biting humans.  Because it appears that this Hanging Thief has met with an unnatural end at human hands, we are tagging this posting as Unnecessary Carnage and we hope that should you encounter a Hanging Thief again in the future, that it be allowed to fly off to live a full life preying on other flying insects.

Thank you for the reply.  This guy managed to get into the bar at the local yacht club and a frightened member read a page of the local news paper to him.  Too bad since he is a predator of the bugs that pester us the most down on the water.  I will post the info from below to the yacht club web site in hopes of educating the membership and saving the next hanging Thief we encounter.
Thank you again for the info.
Tony Hines.
here is a link to the post on FB.  We will try to do better next time:

Subject: Green and red metallic beetle?
Location: Warm wet area/ texas
October 6, 2014 8:49 pm
I found this bug in my living room. It had a black body with yellow legs and the body color in a flashlight is a emerald color. I hit it really hard on the floor with a thick hard yellow pages book. And when I thought I killed it, it took off running really fast and hid behind my TV Stand table. I got this really powerful roach and beetle killer but the insect didn’t die and kept running until it slowed down 8 minutes later. Please help.
Signature: Brook

image too blurry

Here is a better picture.

Tiger Beetle, we suppose

Tiger Beetle, we suppose

Dear Brook,
This might be a Tiger Beetle, and in our opinion, these beautiful beetles, which you observed look like emeralds, are much more attractive alive than dead.