Everyday observations in the woods and wetlands of northeastern North Carolina.
So, you're out with your chainsaw clearing hazard trees off your newly cut trail. You bend down to roll an old, rotted log off the trail and it breaks. Inside you discover this attractive looking insect. Quick! Do you pick it up for a closer look?
NO! At least I wouldn't (Treebeard will pick up just about anything). This is a black corsair, Melanolestespicipes, one of the assassin bugs. It can inflict a nasty bite from what I've read. The ever intrepid Treebeard wanted a closer look, so of course he picked it up. Luckily he was careful and the bug was cold and didn't bite him, but it did release a foul smelling chemical. Somewhat reminiscent of a dirty, wet dog.