No sooner had I recovered from the psychological trauma of last week's mantid attack than my pure blood was spilled again in broad daylight. This time the honor went to an Asian tiger mosquito1 (Aedes albopictus).
The only arthropods that I kill intentionally are mosquitos2. I don't even kill the ticks I find on my clothing in the woods; I just flick them off. But it's different with mosquitos. There are so many of them and they just won't go away. You brush them off, they come back, you brush them off, they come back...
Another problem with the Asian tiger mosquitos is that they don't wait for the cover of darkness to initiate their blood-sucking, West Nile virus-transmitting business; instead, they do it during the day. That, of course, increases their chances of getting squashed in a pool of their victim's blood.
Natural selection was on my side this time.
1According to the information on Maryland Department of Agriculture's web page, "On average, tiger mosquitoes ingest 2 - 6 milliliters of blood per bite." This is totally, absolutely, ridiculously wrong. Such a tiny animal could not possibly fit that much blood into her body. The correct units are probably microliters. I just checked the size of a 5-µl water drop from a pipet. It could probably fit into the abdomen of a tiger mosquito with some stretching.
2I also collect pseudoscorpions, but that I do in the name of science, which, of course, justifies almost everything I do. No?