These bugs are fearsome predators, usually darting out from hiding to seize their prey with their forelegs. They are also willing to bite any human brave enough to pick them up. They are among the largest of the True Bugs, reaching more than 100 mm in length in the Neotropics.
The hind legs of Giant Water Bugs are flattened and bear many setae, and are thus modified for swimming. The flat body shape helps the bugs slip through the water without much resistance, and underneath is a keel for stability.
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