Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Alien Sighting

I was a fool to believe that growing up in the country meant that I had seen all of the strange bugs there were to see in my little corner of the world. Imagine my surprise when this fellow showed up on the porch.....
I'd like for you to meet "Alaus oculatus", a.k.a. "The Eyed Click Beetle", a.k.a. "That Freakin' Bug from the Paleozoic Era"!!! I just love scientific jargon.

By conducting a little research, I discovered that these bugs are just as crazy as they look. Crazy, but harmless. Their "eyes" are just nature's way of psyching out predators. Their real eyes are located elsewhere. When threatened, they play dead. They will drop to the ground and lay motionless until they feel safe. Just for good measure, they will begin to jump about six inches into the air while making a clicking noise. This will continue until they have determined that the coast is indeed clear!

The following description just cracked me up:

In their Lilliputian world, the oversized eye-spots suggest a creature larger and more menacing than the harmless click beetle. Perhaps to a hungry predator, the jumping beetle looks serpent-like and dangerous as it snaps and rears up when threatened.

Oddly enough, that paragraph describes ME when I first wake up in the morning. Thank goodness for coffee.

18 comments:

Lori said...

Those 'eyes' kinda psych me out too!

Amy-littletoesandcheerios said...

Take me to your leader!
Looks like an alien to me.
Kinda cute though...in it's own little way.
Hey, have you ever seen the movies-vanishing or highway with Kiefer? Two good movies...some cussing.

belladella said...

Oh god, I think we have those on our back porch. I didn't need to know about the jumping. Ick.

Have a great day!

Amy said...

I think I would be ok until it started jumping and clicking at me. Then, the girlie screams and running may take place.

Caution Flag said...

That's pretty yucky. I don't blame it for playing dead.

Living on the Spit said...

lmao AGAIN!!! i was just getting ready to say...this sorta sounds like me! He does look like an alien, but I bet one of my geckos would LOVE to eat him! He would scared the patoodles out of me though!

Have a great day...I continue to wait for a good storm so we can "partay" on the bay!!!

BOSSY said...

My what Big Eyes you have.

Mental P Mama said...

Okay. I don't like that critter one little bit. Tell me they don't live in the northeast.

Chesapeake Bay Woman said...

Oh no you did not see this thing near your house! If I had encountered this, anyone on any corner of the planet would hear my screams. You just might have an infestation if you don't watch out....

Holy Crappers said...

These bugs are alot like my familia. They play dead when asked to do things.

#1

Pleasing Procrasinator said...

It had me a little fooled at first too.
I would be okay until it jumped then it would have to DIE!!!

Holy Crappers said...

Those eyes were just gross!


peace
#2

(Sometimes!) Serendipitous Girl said...

Might I interest you in some BIKINI COFFEE? Good lawd, I think I'm going to have to go there. Little tidbit, a "Bikini Coffee" type place in Seattle had one of their barristas throw a cup of hot water on a pervy guy dressed in ladies lingerie. NO LIE! It was on the news today.

HalfAsstic.com said...

We have that exact same bug here, but sans the "eyes"! Swear! When we were kids we'd pick them up and hold on to one end or the other and they would bend in half and click suddenly trying to pop up and get away. heh heh heh, we were evil little kids...

Keeper Of All Things said...

Ewww.....and I thought all the gross bugs were here in Florida

mom x 2 said...

I didn't need to know you had those bugs! What will I do next time I am there????? I don't do well with jumpy things! :O

Jenn said...

Wow! My boys would like that bug!

Grandma J said...

I hate it when bugs stare at me. don't you?