During the spring and summer months, thousands of species of insects will emerge from their long winter slumber across New York. As the temperatures warm, these countless bugs will crawl, burrow, or take flight from inside trees, or from under the leaves or soil where they have lay dormant since late fall.

It's a bit difficult to track insects, for they don't necessarily always stay inside the borders drawn up for them by humans. but according to Insect Identification, there are currently 1,325 species of insects found across New York state.

See Also: "If You See It, Squash It!" Invasive Pest Set to Return to the Hudson Valley

New York even has its own state insect; the nine-spotted ladybug, which is an endangered species, according to State Symbols USA.

But what is New York state's largest, most monstrous-looking insect species?

New York's Biggest Bug

Assured Environments lists the Giant Water bug (or, toe-biters to some) as the state's largest insect, which are sometimes mistaken for swimming cockroaches. Wikipedia's entry describes them as a part of the Belostomatidae family of freshwater hemipteran insects.

See Also: Bug Spotted in Hudson Valley Looks and Sounds Nasty, But is Beneficial

Certain species can grow to over four and a half inches long. Assured Environments says their "size and power allows them to act as aggressive predators, preying on a wide variety of aquatic prey" PBS says that they possess a "needle-like mouth that packs a venomous cocktail to paralyze prey."

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These creatures use their "flattened, oar-like hind legs to propel themselves forward through water".

They have a very painful bite as well. While not fatal to humans, their painful (though nontoxic) bite can create discomfort between your toes.

See Also: Is This Invasive Species In New York State Really As Bad As Some Say?

They also have a few other unsettling traits, says National Park Services. They have the ability to "fake death" by acting rigid for several minutes, and then snap back to life, as well as squirting an unpleasant fluid from its back area, that travels a few feet.

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