What Is It?

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From Xplor: May/June 2019
  • I’m a bottom-feeder most of the time.
  • But my mate has another thing in mind.
  • She packs all her eggs onto my back.
  • And I keep them safe until they hatch.

This male giant water bug looks like something has laid eggs on its back. And something has — a female giant water bug. The male will protect the eggs until they hatch. During this time, he won’t fly or eat. When they’re not mating, giant water bugs can bite, paralyze, and suck the juices out of small prey like frogs, fish, turtles, and snakes. The giant water bug’s other name? Toe-biter. Learn more at mdc.mo.gov/field-guide.

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This Issue's Staff

Bonnie Chasteen
Les Fortenberry
Karen Hudson
Angie Daly Morfeld
Noppadol Paothong
Marci Porter
Mark Raithel
Laura Scheuler
Matt Seek
David Stonner
Nichole LeClair Terrill
Stephanie Thurber
Cliff White