Photo: Ambush bug lurks in the pretty shadows

425 of 1650

Our photo of the day comes from beautiful Northern Illinois.

Some animals have names that don't make much sense. The ambush bug is not one of them.

As described by Encyclopedia Brittanica, this quick hunter hides on flowers or other plant parts, from which they ambush their prey. "When prey approaches closely enough, the ambush bug grasps it with its front legs. The upper section (tibia) of each foreleg has teethlike structures that mesh into similar structures on the lower, greatly thickened leg section (femur). Holding its victim in these pincers, the ambush bug inserts its short beak and sucks out the body fluids. Even though the ambush bug is small (usually less than 12 mm, or 0.5 inch), its prey may be as large as a bumblebee, wasp, or butterfly."

All in a day's work.

Thanks to photographer Ted Roger Karson for this great glimpse into the gory side of bug life.

Would you like to see your nature photo featured as the TreeHugger photo of the day? Join TreeHugger’s Reader Photo Pool on Flickr and add your pictures to the group.

425 of 1650

More Slideshows