If the one thing that's stopped you from having a fear of insects is the certainty that they're not smart enough to plan your demise, it may be a good idea to stop reading. Everyone else, meet the Assassin Bug.

New Scientist reports on a study carried out at Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia, that demonstrated how much these bugs live up to their name. According to Anne Wignall, who led the study, the bugs either stalk or lure their prey using surprisingly elaborate means, including pulling strands of web around itself to pretend that it has been caught:

The spider thinks it's getting a meal, but instead gets eaten itself.

The bugs also create "smokescreens" by bouncing and tapping the ground to disguise its true movements, and hypnotizes its prey with its antennae before eating it. Watching a video of the Assassin Bug in action, however, you begin to get the feeling that certain spiders wouldn't have had much of a chance anyway:

The one thing we have over this bug is size. Pray that it doesn't work out a way to get significantly bigger quickly.


Assassin bugs stalk and lure their hapless prey [New Scientist]