Flying ants invade Vancouver

Take a look at this story from the CBC. Warm summer days like the ones we’ve been having a perfect for what’s called a nuptial flight, when winged ants take to the skies to mate. In fact, a few days ago, while driving home, I saw two ants mating on the windshield of my truck! There’s … Read more

Bedbugs like millionaires too

As this story shows, it’s not just people who live in undesirable buildings who get bedbugs. Even millionaire athletes can have problems with these blood sucking creatures. Earlier this year, Cleveland Cavaliers basketball player Kyrie Irving blamed a bedbug infestation at a hotel he was staying at for missing most of a game. Bedbugs eat … Read more

Beetle named after the President of China

Like a lot of news purportedly coming from China, this story may or may not be true. It claims that a Chinese entomologist discovered a new species of wood-destroying beetle and decided to name it after the president of China, Xi Jinping. For whatever reason, the president didn’t appreciate this particular honour, and the Chinese … Read more

A good year for wasps

A good year for wasps; not so good for the humans that encounter them. According to this story, wasps and bees are especially numerous in Alaska this year due to a mild winter. We’re seeing the same phenomenon here in Vancouver. Wasp nests are bigger, more active and more numerous than this time last year. … Read more

A tricky wasp situation…

Check out this news story about a wasp nest in Qualicum Beach, BC. It’s a big nest, for sure, but not particularly unusual in that regard. What makes it tricky is that it’s hanging from a power line. This is often the case with wasps. Removing a nest is not that difficult, provided you have … Read more

Dinosaur fleas?

Did dinosaurs have fleas? Surprisingly, yes. And, being dinosaurs, they were afflicted with dinosaur-sized fleas, ten times the size of our modern bloodsuckers. The degree of specialization in the insect world, even in the present, is astonishing, so I suppose I shouldn’t be surprised that dinosaurs had their parasites, just as all animals, including humans, … Read more

Manitoba’s insect invasion

Here in BC, we have our share of bugs. Especially in the summer, when we’re inundated with ants and wasps as well as the year-round problems like bed bugs, cockroaches, mice and rats. But spare a thought for the residents of Gimli, Manitoba, who are currently shoveling piles of dead fish flies into garbage bags. … Read more

Pokemon Go’s bug-catching origins

This is one of those things that I never knew, but seems obvious in hindsight. The creator of Pokemon, Satoshi Tajiri, was an avid collector of bugs when he was a kid. Like many children, he would seek out and capture specific bugs and make them fight one another. This would eventually become the inspiration … Read more

Giant bee swarm in UK

Take a look at this video of a huge swarm of honeybees descending on a suburban home in the UK. I have to admit, it looks pretty scary. But honeybees, even in large numbers like this, are remarkably unaggressive. When a colony gets too large, a new queen will leave and take a large number … Read more

Bedbugs in libraries

Check out this story from Missouri. Bedbugs have been found in the public library there, and it’s not the first time. Honestly, this does happen, here in Vancouver and across the world. Bedbugs are a global problem, and this is one of the ways in which they spread. They can’t survive for long outside of human … Read more