I was writing a draft for this blog and had stopped to think [it's harder than it used to be] and a kissing bug walked across the desk to my hand and started up my fingers. I was able to scoop it into a Scotch tape dispenser and go get my camera for pictures. I thought a warning was in order as most people know nothing of it's insidious nature.
Kissing bugs usually crawl onto the victim while they sleep and bore holes in them and suck or lick the blood out. If you find a row of three to six little red spots on your body and slight itching in the morning, they are probably the cause. You wont lose much blood but there are possible side effects.
When a Kissing bug sucks enough blood to fill itself up it turns around and poops right where it was eating. As the bite starts to itch and you start to scratch and rub the poop into the wound you could contract a disease called Chagas. Chagas is a horrible and debilitating disease that can take up to twenty years to kill you. And, the worst part, there is no cure.
Fortunately, it is very rare here in the states. However it is rampant in central and south America. I read where as many as ten million people could have it. There has been only a few cases of it in Texas and most of those people have been out of country before.
However, a customer of mine that lives down the road, and used to run a hunting ranch in south Texas, has had to put down sixteen of her hunting dogs that have contracted it. They traced it back to illegal aliens that worked on the ranch. The medical officials don't know how the dogs contracted it but think that there may be other ways to contract the disease. A&M University is helping her out with this and has tested over twenty of the bugs that she has caught on her place all with negative results. You can Google this for more information. I thought I would pass this along.