I was setting out controls for the final session of the orienteering course I am teaching every semester as the Outdoor Ed class (Gr 6-8). It is a Score-O at a park near the school. Every time I have done this (since 2013), someone in the park would ask me about how the bug catching is doing, what bugs I'm trapping, whether those are for ash borer, or something of that nature. Different person every time. I don't get it. There must be some orange-white bug traps out there.....
Occasionally I find that controls have indeed collected some bugs. Perhaps an opportunity for a mix of sport and entomology when that happens. :-)
Orienteering in certain Australian forests around this time of year (especially if it's been a wet summer) is a good opportunity to get what Lizzie Ingham memorably described as a 'spider web facial'. Any spiders found therein are usually harmless.
I have had someone ask me that very thing when hanging controls, but it was at least a decade ago. Also once when carrying several stands/e-punch boxes back from pickup I overheard a child ask his mother what I was doing and she told him it must be a science experiment.
Also hanging one in a field by a road, had a guy stop his car and ask if I was getting set up for a road rally. (Which I have never done but don't think involves orienteering style flags.)
Here in Vermont I see purple triangular "traps" for the emerald ash borer hanging high in trees in both rural and populated areas. The intent is to see if the insect is in the area. People are confusing the O' flag for those "traps" and probably assume you are trying to catch something.
here is a little info
Blair, MTBO mapping almost always involves trying to disentangle myself (usually bike and helmet) from all the webs collected along the way. I don't know what spiders think they are going to catch from something hurtling along a track.
We had the purple ones a couple years ago in our area but not recently. Talked to a couple students installing them while we were running in Penwood. Hadn't caught any at that time. May be they gave up. Or the grant was slashed from the budget. Should seek funds from DoD for defense against immigrants.