Currently viewing the category: "House Flies"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Need to know…
Location: Stoddard, New Hampshire
October 14, 2016 6:03 am
one of these little guys was walking on my pup yesterday… and today…. he is on my kitchen table… catching a couple of “straggler” flies that have got in threw a broken screen… (thank god, because i hate flies)…. WHAT IS IT? I was thinking a baby praying mantis…??? but the head? and has no front little arms like a mantis…he had a hold of that fly though………. one thing for sure….. he made me smile…. he’s adorable. his little feet!!!
Signature: Patty Marotta

Assassin Bug nymph eats Fly

Assassin Bug nymph eats Fly

Dear Patty,
This is an Assassin Bug nymph in the genus
Zelus.  Though they are not aggressive towards humans, they can deliver a painful bite if carelessly handled.  Their mouths are adapted to piercing the exoskeleton and sucking the fluids from prey.  You can try capturing this Assassin Bug nymph in an overturned glass and transporting it back outside.  We will be post-dating your submission to go live to our site while we are away from the office at the end of the week.

thank you so much for the info. I’d kinda like to put him in an insect habitat….. seems everything i’ve been reading… they live 1-2 years in captivity… do you know if that is correct?
I have a couple of lady bugs in with him (DUG) right now… but he doesn’t seem interested. I’m thinking they might be too big for him? No?… i gave him a small spider yesterday… and he skawfed it RIGHT UP!!!! will he eat small crickets and meal worms?

Since Assassin Bugs are predators, we would expect them to eat any insects that move.  Perhaps the Lady Bugs are foul tasting.

thank you…. I bought him(DUG) a new home today….. complete with baby crickets and tiny meal worms…….. hope to see him eating soon! How long do you think he’ll live in the right conditions? He fascinates me… and made his appearance in my life at a very chaotic time, definitely something to keep my mind occupied…
Thanks again.

Perhaps a year in captivity.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

What is this larva/worm-like creature in my bathroom?
Location: Southeast Michigan, indoors, second floor bathroom.
November 28, 2011 3:12 am
Hello there!
The other day I found this small crawly thing, moving somewhat like a caterpillar across my bathroom floor. I scooped him up and took it outside. Tonight, I was in the bathroom and saw one on the floor again, then noticed another on the counter, and then I saw a pair of shorts on the floor, and upon shaking them out, two more fell to the floor.
This is the first time I’ve seen anything like these critters; adult bugs usually seem cool to me, but the squishy, wormy types really gross me out.
This was in my second floor bathroom, and I have not noticed these bugs anywhere else in my house (yet?). In the pictures, you will see one end taper to a sort of proboscis, which is the ”head” of the critter, and it uses this to sort of pull itself along, it seems.
Anyhow, I look forward to your help. I’d love to know if these are a potential pest, where they might come from, and how to stop them.
Signature: Adam K.

Seeds? or Larvae???

Hi Adam,
Autumn is the time of year that many living creatures fulfill their reason for living and reproduce, and this includes plants.  Many plants have evolved unique methods of dispersing their seeds, and this includes the development of spines and stickers that attach to the fur and feathers of mobile creatures, and this includes human beings.  Clothing, like the shorts you seem to have left on the bathroom floor for several days, can become infiltrated with seeds that are transported to new locations.  We believe these are seeds, though before we enlarged the images, we mistook them for the larvae of Carpet Beetles.  If they did in fact move of their own volition, then perhaps, like Mexican Jumping Beans, the seeds contain insect larvae that are feeding on the embryo inside, eventually emerging as adult insects.  In our opinion, your things do not look like insects, but they do resemble seeds.  Perhaps eventually a reader with a more botanical background can confirm or deny our suspicions.

Not larva, but Seed, we believe

Thanks for the response… wow, that’s weird, and really creepy. You see, these things did move, and the pointed end would move around back and forth, as if it was a feeler/antenna/proboscis. The “body” was soft and segmented and moved like a slug/caterpillar, in an inching fashion… and they moved relatively fast for their size and form of locomotion.
The reason it’s weird is that those pair of shorts haven’t been worn outside for at least two months, and they were clean before I took them off. So it is hard to grasp where they came from!
Hopefully plants aren’t evolving in creepy ways! Just kidding… but anyhow, thanks again for the response. It still seems a bit of a mystery to me, but since I removed them, I haven’t seen them again

Hi again Adam,
Maybe we are wrong and maybe they really are some unknown larva or other creature.  Now that this is a featured posting, perhaps someone will be able to provide a conclusive answer.

Eric Eaton responds
Yeah, these actually are larvae.  Some kind of fly as I recall.  Hang on…..Ok, looks like larvae of Fannia:
Not sure if I want more information on exactly where they were found….:-)

Thanks much Eric.  We are also linking the the family page for these creatures, which we suspected had to be Fly Larvae if they were insects, and we learned on BugGuidethat the “Larvae live as scavengers in various kinds of decaying organic matter.”

Muscoid Larva

WOW! Holy crap! That has to be it, Daniel! Those look *exactly* like the things I saw, and you will notice that in the page there, the person said they found them “eating” cigarette butts! That must be it! There was an coffee mug that my roommate had been using as an “ashtray”, and it was nearly overflowing with butts. I dumped it out after finding the bugs, wondering if that was the problem. That’s it! Thank you!

At the risk of sounding crude Adam, we are very happy they had nothing to do with the shorts on the floor.  We are put out by human parasites.  We also feel it is fair to call them Maggots.

lol No, no, that gave me a good chuckle. I am quite happy they had nothing to do with the shorts, since the shorts are mine! I guess those little maggots crawled out of the mug, and must have fallen down onto the shorts. Human parasites are no friend of mine either 😉 I still wonder how exactly the maggots got in the glass in the first place, but I suppose a Fannia adult could have laid eggs in there before they died out. That would also explain the small flies I saw in the bathroom about a month ago.
Thanks again!


What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

please identify this carnivorous? bug
Location: 01867
August 19, 2011 8:06 am
seen outside yesterday north of boston
Signature: -bugged out

Red Footed Cannibalfly eats House Fly

Dear bugged out,
The predator is a Robber Fly known as a Red Footed Cannibalfly and it is eating a House Fly.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Pseudoscorpion Holding onto House Fly
Location: Southwest Indiana
August 18, 2011 11:58 am
I just want to let you know how much my family and I appreciate your site. After searching, I never fail to identify the bug I am looking for.
I am including pictures of what I believe, thanks to your site, is a Pseudoscorpion hitching a ride on a house fly. He was actually holding onto the fly’s mouthpiece, much to the fly’s dismay. The fly would constantly stop and try to pull the little guy off.
Afterwards, we released the fly and his hitchhiker out in the garden. Thanks again.
Signature: Heather

Phoresy: Pseudoscorpion and House Fly

Hi Heather,
Thanks for the compliment.  This phenomenon of hitchhiking is called Phoresy and Pseudoscorpions are quite good at it.

Phoresy: Pseudoscorpion and House Fly


What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

What’s this fly? It looks mean
Location: Janesville, IA
August 12, 2011 12:20 pm
This fly was outside on my porch. I initially took a series of pictures and it was just the fly. When I returned, it looked like it had caught a house fly and was consuming it. It’s big, about an inch long. It looks like a cross between a fly and a cricket. I really need to buy an insect book.
Signature: Jill Lockey

Robber Fly eats House Fly

Hi Jill,
The predator in your photo is a Robber Fly.  Robber Flies are adept at capturing prey on the wing.  If you want an excellent identification guide, consider Eric Eaton’s Kaufman Field Guide to Insects of North America, and Daniel is very proud of his first book, a pop culture tome on insects entitled The Curious World of Bugs.  We can’t believe we don’t have a House Fly category, and now is an excellent time to remedy that.

Thanks for the ID and the suggestions on bug books. I will check those out.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination