They know where to find you. And you can't escape.
These tiny menaces aren't enemy micro-drones. They're a more old-fashioned assailant.
They're the small biting insects that you see outside all summer, but never knew had a name. They have, in fact, a few: no-see-ems, biting midges or punkies.
According to Penn State Entomologist Greg Hoover, the insects have a few "unspeakable names" as well.
And these bugs are everywhere this summer.
"It could be because of an abundance of moisture this spring," Hoover said.
Northern states from Washington to Maine and down to Mississippi all received more rain than average this spring.
No-see-ems breed in ponds, wetlands and near flowing water like streams. They'll also breed in any stagnant water in your yard.
No-see-ems will bite you when you're digging in the garden or sitting out on your boat. Even at home, a screen door won't give respite from the bugs. At between 1/16th and 1/8th of an inch, biting midges fly right through the holes in the screen.
Like the mosquito, the female biting midge feeds on blood. Though no-see-ems are tiny bugs, their victims say the itch from bites is just as bad as mosquito bites.
"The pain is quite extreme when you look at their size," Hoover said.
The folk remedy cure is painting over the bite with nail polish. A more effective technique is rubbing on some antihistamine cream.
But, like most insects, biting midges have their good points. Their rain forest relatives pollinate the cacao plant. The insects are something that we "equate with causing us pain," Hoover said. "But we don't have chocolate without pollination."
A swath of snow and wintry mix with slippery travel will reach from the Central states to New England prior to the weekend.
Lingering frigid air will not only lay the path for more icing this weekend but will also delay recovery in communities dealing with widespread power outages and thus no heat.
Bitter cold will linger in the parts of the southern Plains impacted by the late-week ice storm, which could have been the worst to hit the United States in years.
A historical nuisance in the Christmas tree industry, brought on by recent wet weather, may threaten the tree crop this winter season.
A new storm threatens to bring travel disruptions and power outages Sunday into Monday in the Northeast, including the I-95 corridor.
A storm coming Sunday night has the potential to bring more snow and travel problems to Boston and New England
Denver, CO (1913)
Snow cover reaches 32.6", maximum depth of snow.
Little Port Walter, AR (1964)
14.84" rainfall in 24 hours. Greatest 24 hour rainfall event in state's history.
Chardon, OH (1962)