Currently viewing the category: "Dobsonflies and Fishflies"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: what’s this insect
Location: western Maryland
May 27, 2015 7:07 am
Wondering if this was another type of Dobson fly. was laying eggs in clumps on leaves beside the river. North branch Potomac river.
Signature: jordan

Dark Fishfly Laying Eggs

Dark Fishfly Laying Eggs

Hi Jordan,
Your Dark Fishfly in the genus
Nigronia is classified in the same order as a Dobsonfly.  We believe your individual is Nigronia fasciata based on comparing the markings on the wings to individuals posted to BugGuide.  According to BugGuide:  “Emergence of adults may be synchronized. Adults are diurnal (seen flying near streams) and also nocturnal, so come to lights. Eggs are laid on the underside of vegetation overhanging a stream. Larvae are aquatic, predatory. Perhaps take three years to mature in more temperate areas, such as West Virginia. Pupation occurs in earthen cells on the edge of streams.”

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What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: ?bug
Location: Logansport, Indiana
May 18, 2015 5:58 pm
This is on a piece of wood. Wings are about 2 inches long. Never seen one before?
Signature: Bonnie Brown

Female Spring Fishfly

Female Spring Fishfly

Hi Bonnie,
We suspect you live near a body of water.  This is a female Spring Fishfly, Chauliodes rastricornis, and according to BugGuide:  “The antennae of females are serrate (saw-like).  The comb-like, (pectinate) antennae of the males are quite obvious.”  You many compare your individual to this image posted to BugGuide.

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What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: What’s the name of this bug?
Location: Stamford, Connecticut
May 16, 2015 11:24 am
Can’t find anything online !! A few things I know: It comes out when it rains. It has huge wings and it has a stinger.
Signature: Thalita

Hellgrammite

Hellgrammite

Dear Thalita,
This is a Hellgrammite, the larval form of a Dobsonfly.  When it matures into a winged adult, it is quite fierce looking, and the adults are sexually dimorphic.  Male Dobsonflies have enormous sickle shaped mandibles, and despite the fierce appearance, they are harmless.  Female Dobsonflies have much smaller, though more utilitarian mandibles that can be used to defend her against predators.  We recently learned first hand what we have long suspected, that the bite of a female Dobsonfly might draw blood.  You are misinformed about Dobsonflies or Hellgrammites possessing stingers.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Flying cockroach
Location: Costa Rica
May 13, 2015 5:15 am
This bit me on finger. Drew a lot of blood
Signature: Jeff

Female Dobsonfly

Female Dobsonfly

Dear Jeff,
This is a female Dobsonfly.  We have always stated that though they are harmless, the mandibles of a female Dobsonfly are quite strong and they might draw blood.  Thanks for the confirmation.  Male Dobsonflies have much more specialized mandibles, but they are incapable of biting.  Perhaps the females have developed more defense mechanisms to protect them as they lay eggs.  Larval Dobsonflies, known as Hellgrammites, are also capable of biting.

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What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: what is this bug?
Location: Milford nh 03055
May 11, 2015 1:24 am
My husband and I went to the store this morning and noticed this large and honestly creepy bug… what is it?
Signature: The Guinesso’s

Hellgrammite

Hellgrammite

Dear Mrs. Guinesso
This memorable insect is a Hellgrammite, the larva of a Dobsonfly, and they are generally found near water.  Hellgrammites are a favorite bait of freshwater anglers.  If this Hellgrammite creeped you out, you should be thankful you did not see a winged adult male Dobsonfly.  Despite his fearsome appearance, he is perfectly harmless.

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What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Mystery moth
Location: Powell, Ohio
May 7, 2015 2:04 pm
Saw this moth at the kids’ school today. Never seen one before. Assuming it’s male, cause of the fuzzy antennae. Columbus, Ohio area, lots of woods, ponds and streams around.
Signature: Amber

Spring Fishfly

Spring Fishfly

Dear Amber,
Though it has some mothlike qualities, this Spring Fishfly,
Chauliodes rastricornis, is not even closely related to a moth, though your speculation that it is a male insect because of the antennae is correct.  According to BugGuide, they are found:  “Near calm bodies of water with detritus.” 

Sue Dougherty liked this post
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination