WARNING: We're seeing the 'toe biter' more than usual this year

ATLANTA — Because of all the wet weather we've had this year, people are seeing the water insect known as the “toe biter" more than usual, according to experts.

The “toe biter” -- whose real name is Belostomatidae -- is usually about 2 inches long and bites humans’ toes. The bite usually feels like a wasp sting.

"When people encounter these and get bitten by them, it's when they're in a creek or the shallows of a lake, something like that," said University of Georgia Agriculture Extension Agent Courtney Brissey. "It gets you right on the toe."

Brissey said some people in metro Atlanta are reporting an increase in encounters.


"Their mouthparts aren't actually chewing mouthparts. It's a beak. So it's like a straw that they actually stick you with, kind of like a needle," Brissey said.

Experts said the bugs sometimes end up in swimming pools, as well.