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Author Archives: Polistes fuscatus
Why do I get bitten by mosquitoes, but my friends don’t?
Written by Joe Ballenger Hello, I have a friend (yes, true!) who was telling me that she gets bitten from lots of insects yet her husband doesn’t have this problem so why do some people get bitten and others don’t? … Continue reading
Hey Askers! We wanted to give y’all some more details about what’s going on behind the scenes. We are three scientists who answer your questions for free, and we’ve got a lot going on behind the scenes. Joe and Joanie … Continue reading
It’s (probably) not a murder hornet.
So, Vespa mandarinia still continues to capture the imagination of people across the US. The Washington Department of Agriculture recently confirmed the first sighting in 2021. So, right now seems like a good time to give an update. Mostly as … Continue reading
So let’s talk about some weird bees!
This month, we got a pair of questions where people were asking about weird bees. I was taking pictures of bees in my garden and I saw one that looked like it had a ball of cotton in its mouth. … Continue reading
Besides cicadas, what other insects swarm?
Earlier this week, I had a conversation with journalist Clare Proctor about some flies which were swarming over Chicago. Earlier this month, Chicago was overrun with some kind of fly. According to Matt Bertone and Erica McAllister, they were Muscoids-any … Continue reading
Featured bug: Jerusalem crickets (AKA Skull Bugs)!
It’s the start of field season, so Joanie, myself, and Nancy all have had a lot to plan for this month. So instead of doing a really deep dive on a question, I wanted to talk a little bit about … Continue reading
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Can Gordian worms infect humans? Also, what is ‘pseudoparasitism’?
We get a lot of weird questions in our inbox about parasites. Most of them, we can’t answer because doing so would amount to giving medical advice…but every so often we get a question completely out of left field. Like … Continue reading
Are there insects which are toxic as adults, but not as larvae?
Written by Joe Ballenger I wanted to know if it is possible for the adult butterfly to be poisonous while the caterpillar of the same species is not poisonous? I think this is a really insightful question, and I’ve got … Continue reading
If you’re allergic to the bugs you eat, can you become allergic to nuts?
Our question this week comes from the Nature Check discord. Nature Check is a project where we use games like D&D to talk about science, and you should totally check it out! In the food channel, we were talking about … Continue reading
Do insects get fat? Everything you ever wanted to know about the fat body.
Written by Joe Ballenger So this is a fantastic question, especially if you’re trying to shed those extra pounds after Thanksgiving and Christmas. So do bugs get fat? Yeah, they do. Sometimes it’s adorable, and sometimes it’s…not.
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