Uncover 10 North Carolina Bugs That Chunk

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Uncover 10 North Carolina Bugs That Chunk

North Carolina is located in the southeastern United States, which means it has a humid subtropical climate. As such, it is home to many wild animals, including insects!

Today we’re going to discuss the animals that people always try to avoid – either because they cause painful bites or are considered annoying bugs. You’ll learn where to find them in North Carolina, what their bites look like, and if they’re dangerous.

If you are bitten by a wild species, remember that all bites can provoke allergic reactions and secondary infections. You need to see a doctor if the wound doesn’t heal and additional symptoms appear.

1. Red imported fire ant

Red imported fire ant stings look like swelling red spots that cause pain and itching.

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Scientific name North Carolina location stitches
Solenopsis invincible Found in at least 74 out of 100 counties Puffy red spots

While red imported fire ant stings are not considered dangerous, humans can develop life-threatening allergic reactions. Because the toxins in their venom contain four known allergens, allergic reactions are common.

The stings left by these small insects look like swelling red spots that cause pain and itching. Blisters may form at the wound site within the first 12 hours. It is generally recommended to clean and disinfect the area and apply ice to reduce pain and swelling. However, you should seek immediate medical attention if you develop other reactions, such as dizziness, vomiting, or difficulty breathing.

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2. Spiders

European cave spider (Meta menardi)There are over 50,000 species of spiders around the world.

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Scientific name Species found in North Carolina bites
spiders (order) Among others, the White Sac Spider, the Parson Spider, the Carolina Wolf Spider, the Brown Recluse and the Black Widow Most spider bites are harmless, but some can be life-threatening

There are over 50,000 species of spiders around the world! While some spider bites go unnoticed, others are extremely painful and even dangerous.

North Carolina is home to several species of spiders that can cause serious health problems. Two of them are the Black Widow and the Brown Recluse. Black widows live under rocks, planks of wood, and electrical boxes. Their venom affects the nervous system, causing tremors, sweating, and increased blood pressure.

Brown recluse spider bites cause redness, swelling, and tenderness. The skin can become necrotic and require surgery.

It’s important to consult your doctor if you’ve been bitten by a spider, especially if you don’t know what species it is, or if you develop symptoms other than normal swelling, pain, and redness.

3. Mosquitoes

elephant mosquitoMosquito bites are known to cause various types of allergies, leading to symptoms such as local skin reactions, fever, abdominal pain or diarrhea.

©samray/Shutterstock.com

Scientific name Species found in North Carolina bites
Culicidae (family) Among others, the northern house mosquito, the eastern salt marsh mosquito and the Asian tiger mosquito Round, hard, swollen, and red bumps

We all know the infamous mosquitoes! In addition to itchy bites, they can also transmit numerous diseases. They are carriers of malaria, filariasis, yellow fever, West Nile, Zika and dengue fever. These insects are responsible for over 700,000 deaths a year!

Mosquito bites are known to cause various types of allergies, leading to symptoms such as local skin reactions, fever, abdominal pain or diarrhea.

If you are bitten by a mosquito, you will notice a round bump on your skin that becomes hard, swollen, and red. You can have multiple bites in the same area.

If the itching persists for too long or you develop other symptoms, you should see your doctor right away.

4. Bed bugs

Types of bed bugs - Cimex lectulariusMost bed bugs that bite belong to the species Cimex lectularius and Cimex hemipterus.

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Scientific name North Carolina location bites
Cimex lectularius and Cimex hemipterus Found across the state swollen, red, with dark center; can occur in groups

Bed bugs feed on human blood. Most bed bugs that bite belong to the species Cimex lectularius and Cimex hemipterus. While living primarily in the tropics, in recent years they have spread worldwide and are considered large nuisance pests.

In North Carolina, bed bugs are considered a constant problem, especially when temperatures are between 80 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit. However, bed bugs are not considered dangerous. Evidence shows they don’t transmit diseases; Their bites only cause swelling and itching.

If you notice bed bug bites, clean them with antiseptic soap and apply topical antihistamines to relieve symptoms. Some people can develop allergic reactions, so it’s generally recommended to watch for other symptoms.

5. Ticks

Tick ​​Header - Tick BuriedTicks are 0.1 to 0.19 inch long parasitic arachnids that feed primarily on mammalian and bird blood.

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Scientific name Species found in North Carolina North Carolina location bites
Ixodoidea (superfamily) These include the Lone Star tick, the brown dog tick, the American dog tick, and the black-legged tick Southeast regions, closer to the coast Blisters, swelling, burning, redness

Ticks are 0.1 to 0.19 inch long parasitic arachnids that feed primarily on mammalian and bird blood. However, sometimes they also feed on amphibian and reptile blood. These arachnids are common in warm, humid climates.

Ticks are notorious for their bites as they can transmit numerous diseases and pathogens. However, it is generally accepted that if the tick is removed within the first 36 hours, there is no need to worry about disease transmission.

Unfortunately, people often don’t notice tick bites, and they don’t become painful until the tick has sucked enough blood to cause swelling and redness. It is recommended not to remove the tick yourself as you may not be able to remove all body parts.

The most common disease transmitted by North Carolina ticks is Spotted Fever Group disease.

6. Black flies

black bow tie or black bow tieBlack flies are notorious for their bites, which cause itching, swelling, and inflammation.

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Scientific name North Carolina location bites
Simuliidae (family) Near water sources, especially where the water is flowing fast Small punctures to large swellings, itching, inflammation

Black flies feed on mammalian blood. These black or gray insects are small, have short legs, and are notorious for their bites, which cause itching, swelling, and inflammation. Some bites can cause headaches, nausea, fever, joint pain, and swollen lymph nodes related to the connections in their salivary glands. In addition, black flies can transmit the parasitic roundworm Onchocerca volvulus, which can lead to river blindness when infected severely.

In North Carolina, blackflies are found near water sources, especially where the water is flowing quickly.

7. Lice

louseLice bites look like small red bumps.

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Scientific name Location in North America bites
Phthiraptera (Parvorder) Found across the state Small red bumps that cause severe itching

Lice are obligate parasites, meaning they need a host to complete their life cycle. Of the 5,000 species in the Parvorder, only three types of lice can bite humans – the head louse, the body louse and the pubic louse.

While the head and pubic lice live on the human body and feed on the blood of their hosts, the body louse inhabits human clothing and only visits its host when it needs food. Unlike body lice, head lice and pubic lice are not believed to transmit disease.

Lice bites look like small red bumps. They are very itchy and will keep popping up until you get the right treatment to kill the lice and their eggs. In addition, if you scratch the bites, you can cause secondary infections.

8. Paper wasps

paper waspPaper wasps are rarely aggressive towards humans.

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Scientific name North Carolina location stitches
Polistinae (subfamily) Found across the state Pain, burning, swelling, itching and redness

Paper wasps are rarely aggressive towards humans. They are reportedly only aggressive during spring hatching. Their stings cause sharp pain, followed by a burning sensation, swelling, itching, and redness.

If you get stung by a paper wasp, remove the stinger and clean the area with mild soap and water. Ice helps with swelling, while hydrocortisone cream reduces itching.

9. Fleas

Super macro closeup of brown amber flea, Siphonaptera on human skin.  It survives as an external blood-sucking parasite of mammals and birds.Fleas are small jumping insects that bite people and animals.

©Sahara Frost/Shutterstock.com

Scientific name North Carolina location bites
Siphonaptera (order) Found across the state Small, with a central red spot, often in groups of three or four or in a row

Fleas are small jumping insects that bite people and animals. They can cause itchy and painful bites and sometimes transmit various diseases. However, it is generally assumed that their bites are harmless to humans provided they are not allergic and the fleas do not transmit disease.

However, in dogs and cats, the bites are itchy and cause a swollen lump on the epidermis with a puncture mark in the center. These nodules can lead to flea allergy dermatitis, an eczematous, itchy skin condition.

These insects can be found everywhere, even in Antarctica! The flea Glaciopsyllus antarticus is endemic to Antarctica, where it feeds on numerous species of seabirds.

10. Chiggers

chiggersChiggers are also called red beetles, berry bugs or mop mites.

©iStock.com/JasonOndreicka

Scientific name North Carolina location bites
Trombicula (genus) Tall weeds, grasses, wooded areas, along trails and river banks Most often they appear in groups and present with pimples, blisters, hives or welts

Chiggers are also called red beetles, berry bugs or mop mites. They are small arachnids that attach to and feed on the skin of animals and humans. Their bites cause itching and trombiculosis, a rash known as chigger bites. They are fairly common in North Carolina, especially in coastal areas as chiggers prefer hot and humid areas.

If chiggers bite you, you most likely have multiple bites. They may have blisters, pimples, hives, or welts. Itching can last for about a week and the bites should heal within a few days. Like all other insect bites, they can cause allergic reactions or secondary infections. If symptoms persist or others develop, you should see a doctor.

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