What in the heck is this bug?!

Wurkkos

chillinn

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I should have gotten a profile pic. You can see it is there in the top image from the wheel's shadow on the bug's left side.

Wheel Bug on Wikipedia

Wheel bugs are highly regarded by organic gardeners because they consume a variety of insects and their presence indicates a healthy, pesticide-free ecosystem. "They're the lion or the eagle of your food web," Dr. Michael J. Raupp, an entomologist at the University of Maryland, notes. "They sit on top. When you have these big, ferocious predators in your landscape, that tells me that this is a very healthy landscape, because all these other levels in your food web are intact."


Just lucky I caught it before it dragged her off, dissolved her insides, and sucked her dry.
 
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chillinn

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Well, my mother managed to get either bitten by an unknown spider, or possibly stung by this thing... what appears to be a metallic green wasp of some kind. She was bitten or stung on the finger last night or early this morning, and her finger is hot and slightly swollen. She doesn't know what it was, didn't see anything, or does not remember. It did not hurt at first, and I don't think it is very painful, more just stressful because we don't know what it was. The inflammation, a little redness, has worked its way up her finger to her top knuckle, and itches. She was using Neosporin, Triple Antibiotic, and ice, but I just went out and got some Benedril for her. If it doesn't appear any better by 7AM, I'll take her to emergency.

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Any ideas of what kind of wasp this is, and if it stings? I'm not even sure this is what got her, but I looked around and didn't see any spiders (but they're here, of course, several different species), and this guy was the only thing out of place... had obviously come from the utility room into the bedroom where she was probably stung, and then found its way into the kitchen where I spotted it and napped it. Yesterday I removed a weird looking ant from the bedroom wall behind the bed, 1/4 -1/5 inch long and sort of almost velvet matte red with contrasting black legs. The ant was kind of lethargic. I always let things go. I can't kill anything but moods.

I have lived here 2 years and 4 months, and I have never been stung or bitten by anything more than noseeums and mosquitos. I keep the place clean, and to help with that, because I am a bachelor, I have a housekeeper come through every few months. But bugs either get in or were always here. I am not wild about the idea of exterminators.

Edit: there appears to be a stinger in her finger, like a splinter, but I can't get it out. I should have looked closer this morning. I guess we're going to emergency tomorrow.
 
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nbp

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Man I work outside much of the day and I don’t get bitten by so many things as your mom does in the house. She must have tasty blood or something.

You could try an urgent care office first, they are usually cheaper visits than ER and can do a lot of things like that. There are always GPs on staff.
 

chillinn

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Definitely a little improvement with her finger this morning. And I think she got the stinger out herself.

My house is little, 4 rooms, utility room connects to bedroom connects to bathroom connects to kitchen (where I have been sleeping on the floor since she moved in... the reasons for which is a long and convoluted story, but the briefest version is she is a victim of considerable elder financial exploitation, and I am advocating for her, setting up a capacity hearing and petitioning to be her legal guardian, after which I'll have legal standing to hire her a litigator to get back what she lost. The criminal investigation is on hold until the findings of the capacity hearing are made, to make the case stronger). I had been leaving the utility room door open just during the day to help keep the house cooler, only have window units in bedroom and kitchen. But I think the utility room door stays closed from now on.
 

chillinn

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Appreciated. It is really tough to do. Case is complex. This fact turns off investigators. It would take following the source of money through decades of personal and bank financial records, and this requires warrants and dedication. I just got off the phone with someone at state police who does not think there enough to have probable cause to get the warrants. I told him no one knows what a judge will say until the judge is asked, and that my mother is entitled to equal protection under the law, and my say so should be enough for probable cause. Just as it meets the criteria for probable cause having a witness to a shooting, I have witnessed what amounts to a robbery, and technically a criminal conspiracy, and I know who the suspects are, and that the hard evidence exists, and where that evidence must be. I also slipped in that the easy cases are low hanging fruit, and solving the harder cases will bring more personal and professional satisfaction. Everyone wants the findings of the capacity hearing, which is being delayed by not quite having the necessary attorneys fees. I may have to sell the Surefires. There is a case open and on hold in Florida. I wanted a case opened in Virginia for recent and continuing crimes. But it seems I will need the capacity hearing findings first. I optimistically and conservatively hope to have this complete, and attain her legal guardianship, by the middle of next year, maybe sooner.

Her finger is doing better still this afternoon, btw. It seems strange to me a wasp could leave a stinger. I thought they could sting over and over, not leaving a stinger. Maybe it wasn't the wasp that got her... maybe there is a dying or dead bee somewhere. If I am not with her to remember what happened, there is no way to know unless she begins to adopt the habits that those in her condition should adopt... writing down a reminder. She is sort of set in her ways, and often her own worst enemy.

This is the biggest challenge of my life. I am not accustomed to being responsible for anyone else. Cats don't really count. I do need to get a kitten, it has been too long... but I have to wait until we have a place to live that is large enough for the three of us.
 
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chillinn

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I have been doing some research. Wasps can sting over and over because they don't leave stingers behind. I have literally seen one honey bee here in over 2 years. That bee was a little tired, and I gave it some sugar water. Fixed it up, it flew away. The only bees I see are a few bumble bees, might be the same one seen a few times... and they don't sting.

Does anyone know of something other than bees that leave behind a stinger?

Edit1: I don't know why I didn't try Google first. Yellow jackets can leave stingers. Don't see those here. Also Harvester ants. I did find that weird ant in there, maybe there were more. Got my flashlight, checking it out.

Edit2: Nothing, but under the bed is not as clean as I thought, dust bunnies and dust. I just thoroughly cleaned under there about 2 months ago... just checked, that was 24 June. This place. Wooden panels over the cinderblock walls deteriorating, dust collects everywhere. Need to pull the bed and vacuum that out tomorrow. Well, at least I have plans for Saturday!
 
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chillinn

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Power went out today 2 hours 10 minutes for no discernible reason. iPad is petty worthless without connectivity, except as a camera and browsing the Photos.app albums. I came across some images useful to this thread.

First of all, I did snap a shot of that wheel bug in profile, but must have overlooked it for how blurry it is. But you can see the wheel pretty good.

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Also, completely forgot of course, but apparently I took a picture of either the same wheel bug or a relative hanging on the screen outside my window 29 Oct. 2019. Who knows? Maybe he migrated inside, and didn't come from the utility room, or my mom just brought it in on her clothes or something. Or maybe it is a seed bug. But I am inclined to believe it is a wheel bug and the same one, and that it got into the utility room when my mother left the door wide open one day for hours for no reason before I noticed she left it open.

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Lastly, what aren't bees

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