Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Day 474: The Blue Gnats of Autumn

I added this new photograph to Creative Journey in my
Photography section, Gnat

We live within walking distance of the Spokane River. Every fall, we have a week where the breeding grounds of the river just goes nuts with the gnats. They rise and swarm in the millions. The closer you live to the river, the more in touch you get with these blue-bodied bugs.

Looking out the window toward the evening sun, they actually look rather pretty — like fairy dust sparkles filtering the cool air.

But the swarms make taking a walk or riding a bike a bit of a test. I avoided my walks altogether after trying a 2-miler on the First Day of the Gnats. I think I ate three of them. (Protein?) Even with my head lowered, they kept bonking me in the glasses and splatting against my arms.

I did try a bike ride to the post office three times this week. With each attempt, about 100 of the gnats lost their lives as they whacked into my chest. I had to take my sweater off outside and shake it out real well before entering the house.

Taking photos of these critters is not so easy, even with a +10 macro lens! For one thing, they move really fast. For another, they are teeny! This little guy is sitting on my sweater ... he landed there after my bike ride was over. All his cousins are just guts and parts stuck in the fibers.


JWade said...

Do you know what those blue gnats are called? I just took a walk through Brown's Addition and ate three of them myself. They are really pretty, though I think one met its death in my eyelid.

CameoRoze said...

JW, you make me laugh. Yes, they are out in swarms again here in Post Falls, too. It's like you need an umbrella -- or surround yourself with a force field -- just to walk across the street to the mailbox.

Anonymous said...

I was trying to figure out what the gnats are. Ours seem to be dark bodied with a blue stripe along the abdomin, I am not sure of which diptera they are, but reference the paper below for several gnats similar to these...

[Reprinted from Insecutor Inscitiae Menstruus, Vol. XII, Nos. 10-12, 19241
(Diptera, Culicidm)

DD said...

Don't know what these little fairy-like creatures really are, but I've found my bike rides go better if I avoid the streams of sunlight in the evening; they seem to be reaching for the last of the day's warmth. I can't believe I found this blog when looking for info about them, because I'm also in Spokane. ;^)

CameoRoze said...

Thanks for the comment ... 7 years later! The bugs are out in force this week in Post Falls. They sure are pretty in the evening light, but not so nice on my dinner. ;-)