Many species of arthropods (insects, arachnids and others) regularly or occasionally bite or sting human beings. Insect saliva contains anticoagulants and enzymes that cause local irritation and allergic reactions. Insect venoms can be delivered by their stingers, which often are modified ovipositors, or by their mouthparts. Insect, spider and scorpion venom can cause serious injury or death. Dipterans account for the majority of insect bites, while hymenopterans account for the majority of stings. Among arachnids spider bites and mite bites are the most common. Arthropods bite or sting humans for a number of reasons including feeding or defense. Arthropods are major vectors of human disease, with the pathogens typically transmitted by bites and rarely by stings or other contact. Another common negative effect is interference with military activity.
Diptera (True flies)