Insects of Central America

With large parts of Central America being a tropical region and covered in rainforest there are a wide range of insects within the location covering a variety of sizes and colors. Whilst most are OK to humans it does include some insects that should be avoided by humans if possible and it is beneficial if you are aware of at least the basics about these species and what to do if you encounter them.

Of course the easiest thing to do is to use tours within the area which allow you to explore whilst remaining safe and being educated at the same time. One common misconception is that those insects with bright colors indicate poisonous ones however it should be remembered that this does not mean they are poisonous to humans and others are not poisonous at all.

You are certain to be pestered by mosquitoes within Central America so no matter where you are staying whether hotel or backpacking you should be well prepared by carrying mosquito repellent as an absolute bare minimum. There are also insects in Central America which carry names that can strike fear in humans for example there are a range of bugs called Assassin Bugs. A bite from a bug linked to this family can indeed be dangerous for those who are more sensitive to insect bites and can lead to anaphylactic shock which in extreme cases can lead to death.

People often associate ants with the rainforest but these are not really dangerous to humans and instead are more annoying and an irritation. However if you do come across leafcutter ants during your travel then it is amazing to actually watch them at work.

Central America and the rainforests are maybe not the best place to visit if you have a fear of spiders with the area being home to some of the largest species of spiders in the world. The most famous species is of course the tarantula but they are more likely to run than confront and shall only bite if they are under immediate threat and are cornered. Their bite is also only a problem if you are allergic. Only some spiders in Central America are actually poisonous but there is a lot of information available in hotels, guest houses or campsites on what to avoid.

It is important to be aware of the fact that scorpions do exist in Central America and with these coming out mostly at night there are a couple of precautions which should lessen the chances of you being stung. Always check your shoes before putting them on either during the night or first thing in the morning. Some species are relatively small so can easily hide in your shoes but just because they are small they can still pack a powerful and painful sting. You should also not walk about in your bare feet at night as it is very easy to stand on them even if you are living in a hotel and not camping.

So these are just a few of the types of insects you may come across in Central America. However, there are many more. Guided tours and carrying out your homework on them is certainly a good idea.

Source by Matthew Kepnes

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