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Water Scorpion (was Marsh treader)


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#1 NotCousteau

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Posted 21 October 2015 - 10:40 PM

I've fished my whole life, but just finally encountered a marsh treader the other day. It was amazing. I shot this short video:



#2 Evan P

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Posted 21 October 2015 - 11:29 PM

I find it incredibly odd that you haven't seen one before! I pull at least one up in every sweep of the seine done here in the southeast corner of MN.


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#3 Riffledace

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Posted 22 October 2015 - 05:57 AM

This is actually a water scorpion. Marsh threaders are much smaller and live on the water's surface.

#4 NotCousteau

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Posted 22 October 2015 - 07:55 AM

I find it incredibly odd that you haven't seen one before! I pull at least one up in every sweep of the seine done here in the southeast corner of MN.


I probably haven't been looking close enough. These guys are so well-camouflaged.

#5 NotCousteau

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Posted 22 October 2015 - 07:55 AM

This is actually a water scorpion. Marsh threaders are much smaller and live on the water's surface.


Ah, you're right! Thanks!

#6 gerald

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Posted 22 October 2015 - 11:06 AM

Water scorpions are fun to keep in a small aquarium - will eat small worms, insects, tadpoles. 

Yes they can fly, so keep a screen cover on.


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-----------------------
Hangin' on the Neuse
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#7 Kanus

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Posted 22 October 2015 - 11:32 AM

I didnt know what marsh treaders were until you posted this, and now I realize I saw some last week, so thanks for pointing these out!

Water scorpions are really neat. Yesterday I snorkeled in a Florida spring and saw several. Hopefully the photos turned out well. They were hanging on mats of floating algae attempting to snag passing mosquitofish from the looks of it.

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#8 NotCousteau

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Posted 22 October 2015 - 08:56 PM

Gerald, I thought about keeping it but it was so new to me that I thought I better not. Maybe next time. They are super cool.

Kanus, I was mistaken and this is a kind of water scorpion. I can't seem to edit the topic headline.

#9 MtFallsTodd

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Posted 23 October 2015 - 03:40 AM

That's a crazy looking insect!!
Deep in the hills of Great North Mountain

#10 don212

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Posted 23 October 2015 - 08:15 AM

see these all the time in my dipnet, do they sting? something got me recently , felt like a really bad wasp sting, and i suspect this fellow



#11 gerald

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Posted 23 October 2015 - 09:57 AM

I've handled dozens if not hundreds of water scorpions and never been jabbed by their beak, but I guess its possible if you mishandle them in just the right (wrong) way.  I've never seen one make an effort to bite.  More likely you got jabbed by a backswimmer (Notonecta) or another water bug (Belostomatidae or Naucoridae) - they all have a beak and inject venom to paralyze and digest their prey, and readily use it for defense.


Gerald Pottern
-----------------------
Hangin' on the Neuse
"Taxonomy is the diaper used to organize the mess of evolution into discrete packages" - M.Sandel


#12 NotCousteau

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Posted 23 October 2015 - 10:19 AM

That's a crazy looking insect!!

 

see these all the time in my dipnet, do they sting? something got me recently , felt like a really bad wasp sting, and i suspect this fellow

 I thought the same thing, MtFallsTodd. It was fascinating to watch.

don212, this is what the Encyclopedia Britannica says about the water scorpion's bite: "The bite of the water scorpion is painful but is far less harmful to humans than the sting of the true scorpion."

I gently scooped this one up in my hand for a closer look and then put it back in the water with no bites or issues.



#13 don212

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Posted 23 October 2015 - 01:38 PM

some scorpions are extremely deadly, some only annoying, i guess if it's not a crustacean i'll just avoid touching water borne arthopods 



#14 Betta132

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Posted 23 October 2015 - 02:25 PM

That's not actually a scorpion. They're called water scorpions, but they don't have stinging tails, they're just referred to as water scorpions because the guy who named them thought they looked like scorpions. In fact, their 'tails' are actually tubes that they use to breathe air.

Those guys are also called water stick insects. There's five billion of them living in our neighbor's neglected-for-five-years pool and growing fat on tadpoles. 






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