Unitasker Wednesday: Extreme Bug Vacuum

All Unitasker Wednesday posts are jokes — we don’t want you to buy these items, we want you to laugh at their ridiculousness. Enjoy!

In your home, you probably have an upright or canister vacuum that you use on your floors. Maybe you also have a Roomba and a DustBuster to clean up smaller messes. Now is the time to add to your cornucopia of vacuums and get the Extreme Bug Vacuum:

If only there were clutter vacuums to suck up the absurd bug vacuum!

45 Comments for “Unitasker Wednesday: Extreme Bug Vacuum”

  1. posted by Anna on

    aww, this is a toy for kids who want to study bugs. Yes it’s silly, but aren’t most toys.

  2. posted by John O on

    I usually laugh pretty hard at the unitaskers and appliances designed just for making one meal or items to that effect, but this one is a stretch. It isn’t marketed as a vacuum for removing bugs from your home, but as a children’s toy. It comes in a kit with a bug house and flashlight, it is meant as an easy way for kids to suck the bugs up into the chamber and a magnifying glass door closes and locks them in.

    Then the chamber can be removed so they can observe the bug either through the magnifier end or through the screen end. The bug stays safe and the kids learn about it and then they can release the bug and collect another.

    My kids have it, they have had loads of fun, it is small, doesn’t take up too much space, and a good small toy for them to bring on trips to friends homes or grandma’s house. I don’t know if it quite melds with extreme minimalism, but I don’t think it is a unitasker either.

  3. posted by carla on

    I actually have this! I know it’s for kids but I hate bugs and this is actually a really great way so that you can humanely remove the bugs without squashing them with a tissue. Just catch and release outside the house!

  4. posted by Jen on

    I have an old Dustbuster that I use for this very purpose. When bugs get in the house my cats would rather play with them than kill them so I’m left with the task. So much neater than using a shoe or a swatter.

  5. posted by Anita on

    Is it me, or did today’s “unitasker” and “featured toy” get mixed up? :)

  6. posted by SandyO on

    I bought this as a gift for my nephew a few years ago because he loved to collect bugs. It was also great for picking up bits of food and other debris that were dropped at the party.

  7. posted by Robert on

    This is indeed a multitasker! My niece has one of these for playing with bugs, but my 2-year old was playing with it as if it were a hair dryer.

    Boo, Unclutterer. Boo-urns!!!

  8. posted by Allison on

    Perhaps this another sign that I’m getting old, but what happened to kids picking up bugs with their fingers and putting them in some plastic dishes from the kitchen if they’re interested in studying them? Wouldn’t kids be better off using their imagination in determining how to trap bugs rather than being given yet another piece of plastic that does the job for them?

  9. posted by Michael Kaply on

    Yes, this is for kids and it is great.

    There is a unitasker bug vacuum for adults though…

    http://www.amazon.com/exec/obi.....tterer-20/

  10. posted by Laura on

    A Hindi friend of mine actually got one of these – because she was scared of bugs and didn’t want to touch them, but at the same time, felt it was wrong to kill them. So this dohickey lets her capture them and releaase them without having to harm her karma by killing them.

  11. posted by Dawn F on

    There seems to be an endless amount of plastic junk (crap) in this world, doesn’t there? Ugh.

  12. posted by Rue on

    I use my DustBuster for sucking up bugs. If you have one with the fold-out crevice tool it’s about the same length as this! Of course, I don’t care about killing them or not – so I guess if you want to be humane this is probably a better way to go.

  13. posted by Malena on

    I live in Texas. We have bugs. Big bugs. I would buy this.

  14. posted by Serge on

    Sky Mall markets a non-toy bug vacuum. Always cracks me up on flights. Do customers not have paper towels? Or a rolled up magazine? http://www.skymall.com/shoppin.....=102248756

  15. posted by Christine on

    This is the first unitasker that I can say I’d actually think about buying! I hate bugs, but don’t like to kill them, so if there’s a way I could bring them outside without having to trap them in a cup, this would be the perfect way! But I see your point… There are other ways to trap bugs that don’t require yet another item to be kept in my home.

  16. posted by Jeff on

    this is as much a unitasker as pogosticks, slides, & telescopes. i think the 13/15 comments above resoundingly agree that this is not a unitasker. booooo unclutterer.

  17. posted by Janet on

    I love my bug vacuum. It’s a great way to humanely remove bugs from my apartment. It also gives me the advantage of a little extra reach that I wouldn’t have with other techniques which is perfect for ceiling bugs. The dustbuster is not suited for this task because first it would to be cleaned before the bug was vacuumed up and in the time the bug would scurry away, otherwise I’d be releasing dirt and junk when I set the bug (usually a spider) free in the yard.

  18. posted by Sylvia on

    Catching fireflies in the field is not near as challenging with this unitasker. Use a old jar and some creativity for pete’s sake! It amazes me how many kids toys are electronic junk these days.

  19. posted by Brandon Green on

    Hilarious!

  20. posted by Bradley on

    My kids have one of these, bought by a well meaning overseas relative.

    Just what my boy needs to explore the wild miniature world of the red back spider, and our other local poisonous nasties….

  21. posted by Karyn on

    O.K. I have a Bug Story.

    When my son was a toddler–about two or two-and-half years old, which was a long time ago–we were walking up to the grocery store one day. As we were waiting at a light, a big honkin’ garbage truck pulled up in front of us, slowing to turn.

    My son started to SCREAM in the utmost, gut-wrenching terror.

    First thought: Good. He’s not going to run in front of it, at least, because he sees it’s a big honkin’ piece of steel that could crush him in nothing flat.

    Then, amidst the shrieking and screaming, I heard a single word:

    “BUG! BUUUUG!!!”

    He was terrified out of his wits, not because it was a massive truck that could have smooshed his little body in nothing flat, but because he thought it was a BUG.

    One of his favorite movies at the time was The Secret of NIMH, which, you may recall, had a mouse as the protagonist taking a heroic quest through the Big Scary Forest to find the Great Owl. Early in her quest, one of the Big Scary Things the little mouse encounters is… a bug. Several bugs, looming over her with their equally-scary antennae. (Must’ve been Texas-sized bugs.) And my son, somehow, thought the little prongy-things on top of the garbage truck, used to pick up dumpsters, were bug antennae.

    I’ll bet my son wishes I would never tell this story again.

    Anyway, I gave him the usual maternal comfort and reassurance, and life went on.

    As for our little Unitasker, even taking it as the children’s toy it is, it reminds me of an article from the Onion, in which a disgruntled Chinese worker gripes about how meaningless his job his, making cheap plastic crap for Americans. ;-) On the other hand, if the bugs in your home are along the lines of scorpions and Black Widow spiders, then maybe you might want to use one of these instead of your hands.

  22. posted by Tyler Karaszewski on

    Can someone please define “unitasker” for me? Maybe this is naive, but it *sounds* like the definition should be:
    “An item designed to accomplish only a single specific task.”

    We all own *lots* of things that fall into that category, I don’t see why they should be considered ridiculous based solely on that.

  23. posted by Shelly on

    Well I like it. I would have loved it as a toy when I was a kid, and I wouldn’t mind having it for some of the spiders we get in this house!

  24. posted by Marie on

    I have two bug vacuums, but they have whiskers and tails and eat kibble. :p

  25. posted by Laura on

    We have scores of Black Widows, which are very fast and difficult to catch with a tissue or paper towel. Usually I just spray them, but something like this would let me flush them down the toilet.

    Nasty little buggers. Eew.

  26. posted by Peter (a different one) on

    Ok people, so it’s a toy, but it IS called the Extreme Bug Vac, and do you really want to spend $15 on a vacuum for bugs, toy or not?

  27. posted by Caroline on

    I have coveted all of the various models of bug-vacuums I’ve seen over the years — especially the ones with really long ‘necks’ so you don’t have to get anywhere near the bug to suck it up. In fact, if I wasn’t on a student’s budget (read: poor) then I would buy one immediately!
    I am really uncomfortable killing anything (my house has a strict catch-and-release policy regarding insects) and this unitasker would certainly be a heck of a lot easier and less anxiety-provoking than my current method of catching bugs — a plastic cup and clipboard combo.

  28. posted by Paige on

    I have to disagree with you on this one. I have a Bugzooka which is similar to the Extreme Bug Vacuum and I LOVE it! I don’t have to drag out the vacuum every time I find a nasty bug, I don’t have to touch it and the creatures (usually) live because I put them back outside. Oh and it’s fun to use! ;0)

  29. posted by Albert on

    There is a clutter vacuum. The box you collect crap in on yard sale day.

  30. posted by THOR on

    My young brothers-in-law had various and sundry reptiles at one point a few years ago, and a similar device was employed by they and my mother-in-law for the dual purpose of catching annoying buys and keeping them alive and enjoyable for the lizardy creatures to eat.

  31. posted by Jeanne Thelwell on

    @Peter (a different one): price does not a unitasker make.

    I agree with most of the comments: the reasonableness of calling something a “unitasker” really fades when it’s: a) a toy like this or b) something specifically targeted at professionals or serious hobbyists (like the watch-winder and the pancake maker)

    Surely there are enough real unitaskers out their to snark at.

  32. posted by Another Deb on

    I have a bug catcher at my home. I’m married to him.

    As a kid I made a sort of home-made vacuum using an inverted plastic bag and attached to an open end of a paper towel tube. As you draw the bag back really fast, you create a little vacuum and the bug gets whisked in the opposite opening of the tube.

  33. posted by Taylor on

    As someone with a pretty serious fear of bugs, I’ve wanted something like this for years. I’d rather it killed them on the way in, but… hey, you can always Raid ‘em when you bring them outside.

  34. posted by Tina on

    Thanks for sharing this! I agree with some of the previous comments that this is a useful tool. I’ve been longing for something like this for humanely removing bugs, without having to start a regular vacuum cleaner, which would be over-sized and quite unhandy for that type of task. And I think it’s an ingenious idea for a toy. Now I know what to get my best friend’s son for Christmas! :D

  35. posted by Emma on

    I love how every wednesday the unitasker sparks comments :)

  36. posted by Bryan on

    I recently used our house vacuum to suck up ~15 sluggish but not-dead-yet flies from a windowsill in the spare room. Yecch.

    I left the vacuum in the closed room. Next day, all those flies were back on the windowsill. Somehow they found their way out of the vacuum! So maybe a bug vac is built differently?

  37. posted by Jan D - Fibrowitch on

    I want one of those. It has a stronger suction than your average vacumn so bugs hanging on to fibers or hairs get pulled off. I wonder if it works on fleas?

    I have reptiles who love crickets and using that would make it so easy to pick up bugs outside.

  38. posted by Anita B on

    The kid I used to nanny actually had one of these-he is a budding entomologist and it’s great for kids who love bugs but whose parents don’t. I absolutely hate bugs, but had no problem with having him look for bugs outside and the chamber kept the bugs in so I didn’t have to worry about having bugs in the house. It’s a great toy!

  39. posted by Lesley on

    We have this! It was a Christmas gift for my son … and he loves it. What’s cool is that you can vacuum the bug into a chamber, so the bug can’t get away, and you can spend time looking at it. There are also some magnifying class attachments.

    I think you got this one wrong …

  40. posted by Anca on

    I own this but unfortunately left it behind at my parents’ house when I moved. Many a spider would still be alive and outside if I had had this. Shame on you – this is a humane multitasker!

  41. posted by Missi on

    I’m surprised to see a kid’s toy as a unitasker as many of the rest of the commenters. I bought this for a kid last year for $8 on clearance at Target and they LOVE using it to inspect bugs up close. Totally a stretch as it’s a KIDS TOY!

    Sha-eesh!

  42. posted by Shana on

    I have a bug sucker, I love it, and you can pry it from my cold, dead hands when I check out. You can release the critter back into the wild, y’all! Try THAT with a vacuum!

  43. posted by Olga on

    I have a friend who uses it to catch and safely release bugs outside of her home. I’ve seen it in action, it seems to work great. I don’t think I would buy it personally, but if you don’t want to kill a spider or some bug then I think it’s a really neat tool. And I think it’s neat for kids to see bugs up close.

  44. posted by Erika on

    I have a cat. She takes care of all my bugs for me.

  45. posted by Steve on

    Glad to discover this “multitasker.” I’ll be getting several for my bug-loving grandkids.

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