Let me introduce possibly the most misleading name of a bug: the tarantula hawk. Neither spider nor bird, this oddly-named insect is actually a wasp, and a biggun at that.

Nicholas Tauschek
nps.gov
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As tarantulas emerge from their burrows to find a mate across Texas, these wasps are also showing up to ruin their fun.

READ MORE: Texans Prepare: It's Tarantula Mating Season

You see, it would be one thing if tarantula hawks hunted and ate tarantulas, but what they do is quite different and far more sinister.

When one of these jumbo wasps catches up to a tarantula, they wrestle for a bit and, if all goes well, the wasp with sting the spider and inject it with very strong venom that paralyzes it.

They then drag their unwilling friend back to their den where the wasp actually lays her egg on the spider's abdomen. Then, once the egg is ready to hatch and the little wasp babies are... born(?), they slowly devour the tarantula from the inside.

Here's the catch: only the females sting, sorta like mosquitoes, and the males don't have a stinger even if they wanted to.

Can they sting you?

Oh, you betcha! Tarantula hawks can most definitely sting you if they feel provoked or threatened.

In fact, the sting from this wasp is reportedly one of the most intense of all wasp species. Famed entomologist (bug expert) Justin Schmidt ranked this wasp sting as the highest rating of pain on his scale of stinging insects.

In Schmidt's own words, the sting of a tarantula hawk wasp is "blinding, fierce, shockingly electric. A running hair dryer has just been dropped into your bubble bath."

Yeah... sign me up.

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