Maggie Wilson Author

Historical Non-Fiction in Northern Ontario



Female Dobson Fly Source

A couple of years ago I was walking along main street with my friend, Karen. At the very last second, I grabbed her arm to stop her from stepping on a gigantic insect. It was enormous. Big enough to completely fill the palm of your hand. Though, after doing my research* I realized that holding the thing is ill-advised. They will draw blood. I’ll leave it to you to check out the images on the internet.

*”Honey? I saw this bug. It was THIS big and had huge pincers on the one end. What is it?”

“A Dobson Fly” said my encyclopedic hubby.

I had never seen one before, and would have been perfectly happy to never see one again. Normally I’m not squeamish about bugs and insects and worms and such. However, after a certain dimension is surpassed… urp. Excuse me, but I need to be elsewhere right now. Um, which way to the powder room?

The “squeam” reflex is getting a good run this season. There seems to be an uptick in the Dobson Fly community. I almost stepped on one the other day in a parking lot paved similarly to the one in the photo above. There was one resting on the exterior wall of a Tim Horton’s a few days later. This time, the off-white cladding provided stark contrast to the insect. [Shudder]

Last weekend we spotted another on the pump house at the end of our street. It was dawn, and the yard light was still lit. Reiner likes to stop to check out the moths and butterflies that might be drawn to the lamp. The early birds, the real ones like robins and starlings, were there too to take advantage of the smorgasbord.

Or as Reiner said, “Smorgasborg.”

“Has that been meme-d yet?” I asked. “A Borg feasting at an “all you can eat” joint?”

Yup, that’s me, trying to change the subject. To avoid eye contact with BUGZILLA: The Dobson Fly From the Black Lagoon that ate Manhattan On Independence Day. Twice.

***   ***   ***   ***

My Contribution to Writing Essential Group WEThurs


Categories: Blog Blog Blog

Tags: , , , , ,

57 replies

  1. We used to have a Gas Board in Britain, before the ruddy Tories privatised it. Them ruddy insects get everywhere and ruin everything.


  2. I’m a peace loving Sista these days, so why do the voices in my head scream ‘Kill, Kill, KILL!’? Gross….

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Back away. Slowly. Make no eye contact. Roll yourself into a ball and cover your neck with your hands. Stay very, very still. (Same advise as for bears.)

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Oh, I just died! You were not kidding around about the size of that thing. Yes, that would be me running in the opposite direction, screaming. So not a bug person.


  5. I’m quite amazed that I have never seen one of these critters. Being a southern boy and given all that time spent outdoors snake and bug hunting I have never, ever actually seen one. 😕


    • It surprised me, too, that I’d never seen one before. The mottled pattern makes excellent camouflage. I suspect since they live near flowing bodies of water, that would limit our chances of seeing one, though I’ve been poking around rivers and streams for many years, too. The one that my friend almost stepped on was a dozen paces from the river.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Looks quite cuddly to me. But I’d rather see moth pics.


  7. Hmm, I notice you didn’t take one to your make-shift studio for a photo shoot.


  8. Yikes! That does not sound fun at all.


  9. Well dang, someone needs to make that Borg idea a meme, lol. My that thing looks big, yeah big bugs are freaky, totally agree.


    • I did a very quick google search and came up with only one image for Smorgasborg that was directly tied to a Borg and not just a mis-spelling of the word smorgasbord. So, an opportunity, I suppose to fill a gap in the world wide web.

      Freaky bugs, notwithstanding.


  10. Oh ick! That picture may give me nightmares!


  11. I love this bug – so interesting! A pal of mine posted a picture on Facebook a couple of weeks ago asking if anyone knew what she had just ‘tripped over’ in the parking lot. I knew right away (nature nerd me!) and it started off a firestorm much like here. Lol.


  12. Gross things do not bother me much. We live adjacent to a nature preserve and I have to admit that my opinions of Mother Nature has changed considerably since moving down here from the city. She still is a beautiful lady but GOOD GRIEF, she can be both gross and cruel at times.


    • Hi Greg – yeah, “gross” as illustrated thus: yesterday the one semi feral cat, Jimmy D came to the back door covered in bird doo-doo. I suppose it had to happen one of these days since Jimmy sleeps in the tall grass adjacent to the bird feeder. In the flight path, as it were.


  13. Be afraid…be very afraid…


  14. For goodness sake, get out of it’s way, or shoot it. It’s too BiG to step on! 🙂


  15. Have just begun using the Like button for others’ comments, but when I came to Andrew’s “Aw, so cuddly it is…” remark, wondered why no Unlike is provided!

    Enjoyed the post, have heard of these only in book sections describing fishing; don’t ever want to see one live. Rethinking desire to visit Canada.



  16. I refuse to like anything that involves an insect nicknamed BUGZILLA. Run! Run for your life!


  17. I love your writing style, Maggie. Sure am glad I live in the high desert.


  18. Gurlllllll!!! No no no no no no no. Pardon me now while I find my own powder room. {{{shudder}}}


  19. I’m not a huge fan of bugs – especially bugs that can eat you. I also find it interesting how sometimes there will be an outbreak of a particular weird bug. A few years ago, we kept finding Jerusalem Crickets in our pool (dead, of course – but still creepy).


    • ew!

      I, of course, ever of the inquiring mind had to Google Jerusalem Crickets… I think these tilt the squeam-o-meter for me! Seriously, I cannot stop squirming! I may have to re-think my claim to being OK with bugs and stuff.


  20. I can’t kill anything that crunches or squishes. This looks like it would make for too much of both. Thank god we don’t have them here. I don’t think. Trapping and releasing this looks like beyond my capabilities.


  21. Now, that is just plain creepy. I’ve never seen one and I hope it stays that way! 🙂



  1. WEThurs August 7, 2014: Squeamish | Writing Essential Group

Your thoughts?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s