Currently viewing the category: "Aphids, Scale Insects, Leafhoppers, and Tree Hoppers"
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Subject: Mystery Green Eggs on Flowering Plum Tree
Location: St. George, UT, United States
March 3, 2016 4:49 pm
I was examining the new flowers on my flowering plum tree when I noticed these little green eggs. As you can see, they are rather easy to notice against the dark leaves of the tree. I would like to know if they are helpful or harmful, and how to get rid of them if they are bad. Thanks!
Signature: – Ami D.

Aphids

Aphids

Dear Ami,
Though they are quite small, the “green eggs” you observed are actually Aphids.  In addition to normal sexual reproduction, Aphids are also capable of reproducing without mating and laying eggs.  According to BugGuide:  “Over-wintering eggs hatch in the spring into wingless females. These wingless females are parthenogenetic (reproduce without fertilization) and hold eggs in their bodies to give birth to living young. Their offspring are similar to the females, but some develop wings. Near autumn male and female wingless forms are born. These mate and the females lay fertilized overwintering eggs. Males can be winged or wingless; parthenogenetic females are usually wingless. In warm climates, living young may be produced continually.”  Aphids are considered pest insects by most gardeners.  They have sucking mouthparts and they feed on fluids in plants, robbing the plant of both nutrition and moisture.  Though we don’t normally provide extermination advice, in our own garden we try to control Aphids by spraying infested plants with mild, soapy water.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Lichen Mimic
Location: Rancha Naturalista, Costa Rica.
February 21, 2016 10:00 am
Hello,
We encountered this lichen mimic hemipteran in Costa Rica 10 days ago. Can you help in identifying it please.
I tried previously to submit, but have now reduced the size of a single file.
Thanks
Hugh
Signature: Hugh Woodland

Lichen Mimic Hemipteran

Lichen Mimic Fulgorid Planthopper

Hi Hugh,
How large was this Hemipteran?  It resembles a Lace Bug in the family Tingidae, but we could not locate any images of similar looking Lichen Mimic Lacebugs from Costa Rica on the internet.  Lace Bugs are quite small.  We would not rule out that it is some species of Planthopper from the superfamily Fulgoroidea.  Perhaps one of our readers will have better luck with an identity than we have had.

Hi Daniel,
It was 1.5, maybe 2 cm long. I couldn’t find anything on the net either!
Hugh

That is too big to be a Lace Bug.

Comment from Hugh:  August 11, 1016
With the help of Dr Jim Lewis of the Museo Nacional of Costa Rica and Dr Jan Janzen this has been identified as Sinuala tuberculata in the Fulgoridae.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Spruces with tiny scale on stem.
Location: Pennsylvania 19446
February 7, 2016 11:04 am
There is an area of several miles with Colarado Spruce and White Pine decline. The White Pines have Eriophyid Mites and Pine Oystershell scale. The Spruces also have Eriophyid Mites and a scale that looks smaller and different than spruce bud scale. Any ideas?
Signature: Chris

Scale Insect on Spruce

Scale Insect on Spruce

Dear Chris,
We have tried several times to find information on Scale Insects that attack spruce, but to no avail.  We could really use a Hemipteran expert to assist with this ID.

Scale Insect on Spruce

Scale Insect on Spruce

Scale Insect on Spruce

Scale Insect on Spruce

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: What’s the insect that came as a bonus with my Christmas Tree?
Location: Austin, Texas
February 1, 2016 2:41 pm
Hello there,
For the second time in my life I have managed to purchase a live Christmas tree that weeks later developed an insect issue. This time the insect is different than the first. In my Google search to determine what it was this year, I came across your site and another individual’s issue with a Christmas tree pest–which for them turned out to be the Giant Conifer Aphid.
Thanks to their picture and your site I now know what my insect was the first time. Now I’m wondering what this new one is. The aphids never left the tree and I didn’t notice them until I was taking it down. Those were also on a different type of tree for me–a Fraser Fir.
This year I bought a rare type of tree–a Natural Noble. While Noble Firs are common enough for purchasing, Natural Nobles are not–at least not where I live. It’s a beautiful and expensive tree that I discovered at a particular local nursery in Austin, Texas. I’d never seen one available before at a Christmas tree stand or a nursery. This is now the 3rd year I’ve bought this type of tree but the first time it has come with bugs.
The other night (4-5 weeks after purchasing the tree) I noticed what I thought was a large mosquito in my kitchen. Then I noticed a second one. Then the lightbulb went off in my mind to go look at the trunk of the tree as this time of year there aren’t mosquitos. Yep, sure enough there were insects parading up and down the trunk, in different sizes. They were fast movers. While the image may make them appear large they really aren’t. Like I said, they look about like a giant mosquito.
They are winged, or at least many of them were, but I never saw them flying. They were either dead under the tree or dead in another room. The ones on the trunk were very active but not flying. I don’t think those had wings or were so juvenile they couldn’t be seen yet. Overall they’re pretty fragile and when you touch a dead one its legs cling to the skin.
I looked online quite a bit for insects that come in with Christmas trees but couldn’t find anything that looked like this or that had wings. Any idea what this is?
Signature: Michele (Austin, Tx)

Giant Conifer Aphids

Giant Conifer Aphids

Hi Michele,
A living Christmas Tree is host to many creatures that continue to develop in the warm indoor conditions of the heated home.  For the past few years, we have gotten submissions of Giant Conifer Aphids in the genus
Cinara plaguing homemakers.  Your image depicts winged adult Giant conifer Aphids similar to the one in this BugGuide image.

Hello Daniel,
Thank you for the positive identification and your very timely response. I’m so sorry that I didn’t offer you more of a challenge. You get emailed about these bugs a lot and I was convinced they were something other than the Giant Conifer Aphid. These winged adults look so different in size and shape from what I experienced the first time.
Nonetheless, thank you again for taking the time to respond to me. I’ve had a lot of fun perusing your website.
-Michele

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: There are so many things happening here
Location: San Marco de los Santos, Costa Rica
January 31, 2016 9:55 pm
Hello! I was walking through the chilly mountain region of Los Santos, Costa Rica, and almost walked straight into this bug party happening on a branch of a tree in a city park.
I can identify the wasp, and up near the top there seems to a Blue Morpho cocoon, but what’s attacking the Morpho? And what are those robotic looking white guys? And the bright yellow guys?
The wasp wasn’t going anywhere, either. He looked almost as is he were chaperoning the bug party, and had no intention of flying off.
Signature: Abby

Treehoppers, Membracis mexicana, Adults and Nymphs

Treehoppers, Membracis mexicana, Adults and Nymphs

Dear Abby,
The insects in question, both the “robotic looking white guys” and the “bright yellow guys” are Treehoppers, and they are the same species.  The yellow individuals are the winged adults and the white individuals are the immature nymphs.  We identified the species as
 Membracis mexicana on FlickR.  We verified that ID on Arthropoda Mexicana where there are images of both nymphs and adults.  Encyclopedia of Life also has images of the adults.  We believe that you have mistaken a bud or pod on the plant for a Blue Morpho chrysalis, which is understandable because this image from pBase resembles what is on the plant.  The bud or pod is infested with Aphids.  We will also try to eventually provide a species of family identity of the wasp.

Treehoppers, Wasp and Aphids

Treehoppers, Wasp and Aphids

Thanks so much! :)
Looking again, a morpho cocoon wouldn’t hang like that, you’re right! I jumped to that since they’re so common here.
I’m going too look into the treehoppers a bit.
Thanks for the info!
Abby

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Unknown Bug
Location: Xi’an, Shaanxi, China
January 29, 2016 3:06 pm
Hi.
I was wondering if you could identify this little critter for me.
Photographed at the site of the Terracotta Warriors in Xi’an China in September. Approximately 3cm long, although it appears to have wings, it did not seem inclined to fly despite a prod.
Thanks
Signature: Graham Williams

Spotted Lanternfly

Spotted Lanternfly

Dear Graham,
We have always used the common name White Cicada for this Fulgorid Planthopper,
Lycorma delicatula, but in researching this posting, we have learned on BugGuide that it was first reported as an invasive species in Pennsylvania in 2014 and that it is commonly called a Spotted Lanternfly.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination