I admit that I am a little different than most folks. I enjoy watching insects. I find their behaviors fascinating and some are quite beautiful. I like most and there are some I am pretty indifferent about. And then there are some that I really hate.
The tiny bugs to the right are insidious flower bugs, or minute pirate bugs, Orius insidious. The fly to the left is really small, so you can get a good idea of the size of these bugs. O. insidious is widespread in the environment, and are voracious predators of small insects and mites. As such, they are usually considered “good” insects. Most of the year they are widespread and you will probably not encounter one.
However, here in Iowa, when the crops are being picked–soybeans in particular, but also corn, these bugs suddenly find themselves without a habitat where they prefer to be. So they leave. As they fly around looking for a place to live, they sometimes land on people. And they bite when they do.
Two thirds of Iowa is row crop land, and if you live in the country the percentage is higher. So they wonder around looking for habitat, and you might be it–they might have to bite you to find out if you are. Their bite hurts, and there are a lot of these tiny insects.
Other places have “no-see-ums” that are flies or gnats. What bites us here, and what we call no-see-ums are these tiny pirate bugs.
I hate ’em.