Nicole_Crews_01by Nicole Crews

We had joy, we had fun, we had seasons in the sun. But as we all know, paradise — and the boys of summer — come with a fair share of bites, burns and near misses. So ladies, as the long, hot summer nears to a close, I offer you a reflective take on some of the more dangerous varmints of the season.

The Chigger — This guy may seem all cute and cuddly but beware! He will burrow into your skin and never want to leave. Like Caitlyn Jenner, you have to use nail polish to get him to come out.

The Shark — The North Carolina coast has seen more of these bad boys this summer than anyone can remember. Alpha males for sure, these guys just want a little respect — and elbow room — and by that I mean the ocean. These cold-blooded creatures come in 500-plus species, but the rule of thumb is, if you see a fin, bring it in.

The Mosquito Ghoster — These fly-by-night boys are long of limb and lanky to look at — but make no mistake, they are bloodsuckers who will take it all and disappear without a sound.

The Cicada — The drummers of the insect world, their human counterparts will flex their tymbals for your attention so loudly you will pray for the apocalypse. Don’t give in! These creatures are hollow inside. Thank god they only come around every seven years.

The June Bug — If you’re a shady lady this annoying critter is for you. The June Bug likes it dark and dank and will die if exposed to light for too long. Naturally nocturnal, you will find them in numbers and usually in dive bars.

The Catfish — Deceptive and murky in nature, these bottom feeders will stalk and creep your social media until their real identity is revealed. Perv alert!

The Copperhead — He may seem kinda sexy on the surface but this guy is pure poison. He will slither into your life and dazzle you rock star style, but he’s just waiting to strike. Plus he likes to tan naked. Ew.

The Black Ant — One of the peskiest critters of the season. The Black Ant tends to gather in your kitchen, touch all of your food and, like a Kardashian, when you get one, you get the whole family.

The Killer Bee — Usually accompanied by a posse — or swarm — these guys are part of a scientific experiment gone wrong. Extremely aggressive and unopposed to guerilla tactics, these fellas are dangerous. If they are after you, keep running and don’t swat. It just makes them angrier.

The Jelly Fish — Clingy at best these creepers are known to sting. The worst part is you have to pee on yourself to get the sting out.

The Tick — Disease-ridden and nasty to the core, these guys will sneak up on you in the woods and get under your skin faster than you can say “thorough body check.” So be a happy camper and avoid them.

The Yellow Jacket — Dandy dressers for sure, you’re likely to run into these peacocks on the festival circuit but they are city slickers as well. If they are chubby and fuzzy they are probably peace loving and grounded. But avoid the sleek and shiny ones — especially on their turf. They love any excuse to defend their nest.

The Alligator — This guy may seem clean cut and preppy but he’s cold blooded as they come. He gives a good hand bag though.

The Grand Daddy Long Legs — He’s ancient and harmless but a little handsy. These harvestmen are not venomous and prefer decomposing creatures. Cougars beware!

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