Fort Walton Beach Critters: It’s a Bug’s Life

Fort Walton Beach Critters: It’s a Bug’s Life

The sea is full of fishies and the beach…full of little critters. The shore is perfect for bird watchers and ocean lovers alike, but what can put a damper on someone’s mood? Bugs, well, depending on the kind. Fort Walton Beach, Florida’s bug population is full of good apples and bad apples. Not to worry, we have a whole list of both, add a fish in there and we have the whole kit and kaboodle.

Fort Walton Beach, Florida’s Bugs and… Their Most Popular Fish

Yellow Flies

Starting hot like the yellow sun, we bring to your attention the yellow fly not to be confused with the fly that caused yellow fever, this fly is way worse just kidding, mostly. Yellow fever was created by mosquitoes and these flies do have a few things in common with our friends, for starters, only the females bite, let’s talk about this bite, mosquito bites are quite annoying but the yellow flies’ bite involves a serrated stinger, unlike the syringe-like bite of the mosquito. Here’s the good news, these tiny creatures don’t come in pacts and typically leave a minimal reaction. So, if you do happen to encounter one you’ll likely be annoyed but you’ll live.

No See Ums

If you’ve lived in the South, you know of these tyrants, but in case you haven’t heard of them we’ll give you the rundown. No See Ums thrive in marsh-like areas, especially beaches and we’ll bet you can guess there’s a reason for their name, that’s right it’s hard to “see em”. Do these things bite? Absolutely, but not to worry, as annoying as they are, they are harmless. Also, as a preventative: Deet spray is an easy deterrent, simply spray those biting menaces away.


You’ve got your butterflies but you know you’re in Fort Walton Beach, Florida when you see dragonflies. These insects are cold bloated killers and incredibly dangerous, to other little bugs they have a 97 percent success rate at killing their prey they’re such good hunters. How they kill tiny bugs is fairly traumatic, catching prey with their feet and tearing off the prey’s wings with its sharp teeth so they can’t escape, and after all that they chow down. Let’s face it, they are still cute though, with those beautiful wings and colorful bodies, and as long as they’re no harm to us we still love them.

Giant Swallowtail

Now for the most beloved critter of nature, the butterfly, but not just any butterfly, a Giant Swallowtail. You can probably guess by the name this bug is huge! The Giant Swallowtail can have a wingspan of 9.8 inches and to go with the general theme of the bugs listed here, it is poisonous, both in caterpillar and butterfly form. However, this butterfly is truly striking and is not harmful unless eaten, so don’t do that. Unfortunately, these majestic creatures only live 4 to 6 to 14 days at the butterfly stage, so if you see one snap a shot!

Florida Ivory Millipede

This giant with 1000 legs gets as big as 1.6 to 3.5 inches and makes a great pet. They may even live longer than most other bugs with a lifespan of 5 to 10 years! And as weird as it may seem, these little dudes are being sold online for 10 dollars a pop, we sense a new business idea, just kidding, but only if you’re kidding! Seriously though, what makes the Florida Ivory Millipede interesting? Well, the number of legs of course but also they spit up when they’re afraid! Only, in the sense of spitting up though, their spit will stain your skin and take a few days to go away. They truly are weird little things but very interesting to look at. We hope you can find one!

Giant Leopard Moth

It’s the least ferocious leopard you’ll ever meet, and some might even say the cutest. The giant leopard may be big in some communities, but it’s certainly little in the animal community. The giant leopard moth can be 2 inches long and has a lifespan of 8 to 10 days. Unlike many of the other insects listed this little thing is not poisonous not even as a cute caterpillar.  The diet of a giant leopard caterpillar consists mostly of trees. Unfortunately, after we tell you all these amazing qualities of the moth we also have to state that seeing one is fairly uncommon so if you come across one try to capture the moment or at the very least let your gaze linger.


Although fish are not bugs, they are still a big part of the Fort Waltin Beach, Florida ecosystem. The Sailfish is one of the fastest fish in the sea and can grow to 11.2 feet long.  These fish have long lives and can live 13 to 15 years (unless someone eats them of course). While these fish are a frequent catch when fishing on your charter boat they can dive as low as 1150 feet. Whether you’re deep diving or on a fishing excursion you can bet you’ll find yourself one of these dope creatures.

It doesn’t matter if you’re searching for or avoiding the bugs listed, if you’re in Fort Walton Beach, Florida, they’re there too. Come to the state that will have you buggin’ out, you’re gonna love it.

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