You can recognize a Scorpionfly (Order Mecoptera) by its long head which bears mouthparts at the end of a long beak. Its common name comes from the tail of one family of scorpionflies in which the male scorpionfly has prominent genitalia that are curled back up over the insect’s body (much like a scorpion). They are, however, harmless. Scorpionflies feed only on dead insects and have been known to raid spider webs for their meal.
Males with insect carcasses are said to acquire receptive females with relative ease. Lacking a carcass, males have been known to throw up and use the spittle as a lure for females who feed on it while copulating with the male. (Photo: Scorpionfly drinking innards of dead caterpillar)
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