Bad News: The Burning Man Site Is Infested With Swarms Of Biting Bugs

As if the idea of Burning Man wasn't dirty enough, a blog post revealed the festival site is infested with huge biting bugs.

John Curley's post on the festival's official blog states in Black Rock Desert, Nevada, the bugs "crawl all over you" and "get up and in you."

He recalls a woman discovering a "good-sized green bug" that found its way into her bra and a female metal worker who had the critters "inside her visor" and "nestled around her eyes."

The bites left at least one woman with "nasty red welts" all over her back.

Curley wrote,

We don't know how the little critters survive in the heat and the sun. All we know is that if you pick up some wood, you're likely to uncover hundreds or thousands of the things. They've blown up inches deep against the sides of the Commissary tent. They've covered the carpets at the Depot. They're all over the Man Base. So it's not a localized occurrence, it's everywhere.

He suggests these bugs are usually seen at an entirely different point of the year, but the spring and summer rains caused them to hatch now.

They may have also hidden on some wood used for construction, Curley guessed.

The blog additionally notes 2015 is the first year in a while there hasn't been any rain or wind during the festival's preparation.

Curley wrote,

Marcia said that one had flown into her mouth gotten lodged between her teeth. She reports that they are quite bitter to the taste.

Gizmodo appears to have identified two types of the bugs with the help of entomologist and insect photographer Alex Wild.

The big green ones are likely stink bugs, which release a potent odor under duress.

The bugs are also attracted to light, so their presence may only increase due to Burning Man's trademark light shows.

As for the smaller, carpet-infesting bugs, entomologist Karl Magnacca believes them to be seed bugs, which also emit odors but do not actually bite.

The painful attacks described in the blog post may have been the seed bugs sticking their tongues into people's skins to find water in the immense desert heat.

Wild said these bugs may be gone relatively soon as they tend to keep roaming on the hunt for water.

Citations: Hey Techies Burning Man 2015 Is Buggy Except Its the Creepy Crawly Kind (Re/Code), Weve Identified Those Bugs Infesting Burning Man And Its Not Pretty (Gizmodo)