What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Chrysalis?
Location: Rachel, NV
January 8, 2013 4:40 pm
I know it’s not a bug, but it might be bug related! We found this in the desert in Rachel, NV on December 27, 2012. We don’t know if it is botanical in nature or some sort of chrysalis and were hoping you could help.
I emailed the Biology department of the University of Nevada and haven’t had a reply so we were hoping you (and your vast readership!) might be able to help us identify what it is.
The object is very lightweight almost papery in consistency. It is aproximately 70cm x 40cm.
Signature: Completely Baffled Kara

Desert Thing

Subject: Plant or Insect origin?
Location: Rachel, Nevada
January 9, 2013 9:00 am
I sent a request to you yesterday with a description and several photos of an object that we found in Nevada. I attached one of the same photos so you will know which submission yesterday was mine.
I made a mistake with the submission, specifically with the measurements. That should have been mm not cm so 70mm x 40mm or 7cm x 4cm. If you could please take note and correct it! Sorry!
Signature: Still Baffled Kara

Desert Thing

Hi Kara,
We haven’t a clue what this thing is, but we have some thoughts.  We do not believe it is a Chrysalis, but it might be some type of nest.  The grooved interior appears to us to have been the means by which this thing was attached to some other object, like perhaps a metal cable of some type like the cables that are part of some fences.  This does not look like any insect nest that we recognize.  Certain wasps create nests made of chewed wood that has a paperlike quality, but this doesn’t resemble any that we can think of.  Some insects like Preying Mantids attach an ootheca or egg case to twigs and possibly a fence cable, but again, this does not resemble a Mantis ootheca.  If it is an insect nest, out best guess would be some solitary bee or wasp.  Perhaps our readers will be able to offer some suggestions.  Please let us know if the University of Nevada provides a response.

Desert Thing

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What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination
Location: Nevada
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2 Responses to Desert Mystery: Unknown Object

  1. Kara says:

    After months of not giving up, I finally got a lead on what it might be. I was told it could be a piece of the inside of a termite mound. Upon further investigation it looks specifically like an arboreal termite nest which is made of carton. Mystery solved!!

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