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

Subject: Mysterious bug
Location: Warsaw, Poland
June 14, 2015 1:18 pm
I found this insect, and it looked really cool. I tried searching for what it could be, but I couldn’t find anything! Do you know what this bug could be??
Signature: Jan Szenk

Clearwing Moth

Clearwing Moth

Dear Jan,
This is a wasp-mimic Clearwing Moth in the family Sesiidae, and we will attempt to supply you with a species name.

Alisha Bragg, Jessica M. Schemm, Kitty Heidih, Mike Coughlin, Heather Duggan-Christensen, Amy Gosch, Alfonso Moreno liked this post
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Wasp?
Location: Tokyo
June 10, 2015 6:25 am
Hello Bugman,
I’ve searching the internet for two hours trying to ID this bug but I can’t find it at all…
I found it in the playground where my 2 year old loves to play everyday but now Im not sure if I should let her play there anymore!
Any help would be greatly appreciated!
Signature: Paula

Clearwing Moth from Japan

Clearwing Moth from Japan

Dear Paula,
Though we have not been able to determine the species, this is a Clearwing Moth in the family Sesiidae, a family with many members that mimic stinging wasps as a defense.  This individual is not pictured in the Clearwing Moths of Japan pdf we located, and it also bears an uncanny resemblance to the female Peach Tree Borer,
Synanthedon exitiosa,  a species that is native to North America and an excellent example of pronounced sexual dimorphism.  We cannot at this time determine if this is a species native to Japan, or if the North American Peach Tree Borer has been accidentally introduced to Japan.  This moth poses no threat to your daughter.

Heather Duggan-Christensen, Diana Yochem liked this post
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: unknown flying insect
Location: central Arkansas NW of Little Rock
May 24, 2015 11:09 am
This insect was in a small group of about 5 or 6 in squash plants. The one I observed was about 15-20mm long and laid one egg on the leaf before moving to another part of the plant. The egg was brown about the size of a small sesame seed. Time frame is Mid-May
Signature: Arkansas Gardener

Squash Vine Borer

Squash Vine Borer

Dear Arkansas Gardener,
Though it mimics a stinging wasp, this Squash Vine Borer,
Melittia cucurbitae, is actually a moth and its larvae are considered pest of squash and other members of the cucurbit familyAdditional information is available on BugGuide.

Sue Dougherty, Christy Harris, Ann Levitsky, C.r. Morin liked this post
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination
Clearwing Moth

Clearwing Moth

Subject: Unknown Wasp
Location: Brazoria County, Tx
October 14, 2014 10:03 pm
I took this photo on Oct. 13, 2014 while birding at San Bernard Wildlife Rufuge near Lake Jackson, TX on the Texas Gulf Coast. It was on a plant in a butter fly garden. Can you identify it for me?
Signature: Joe & Jane

Dear Joe & Jane,
Though it is a very effective wasp mimic, this is actually a Clearwing Moth in the family Sesiidae which has many members that benefit from looking and acting like wasps.  We need to rush off right now, so we can’t take the time to research the species, but you can try browsing the family on BugGuide to see if you can find a match.  Please let us know if you find something close.

Timothy Steele liked this post
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Small blue insect
Location: Memphis, TN
September 10, 2014 12:15 pm
I saw this fellow flying in my yard this morning. I don’t recall ever seeing one before. I reckon it was about an inch long. Any idea what this is?
Signature: William Cooper

Clematis Borer

Clematis Borer

Hi William,
Even though your insect has black wings, it is a member of the moth family Sesiidae, commonly called the Clearwings.  The members of the family Sesiidae are wasp mimics, and even though they cannot sting, they derive protection from their protective coloration and markings.  We first found a similar looking individual on the Moth Photographers Group that is identified as
Alcathoe caudata, the Clematis Clearwing Moth, and upon checking Bugguide we found a good match with Alcathoe carolinensis which is called the Clematis Borer.  The moths in the family Sesiidae have larvae that bore in woody plants, sometimes causing considerable damage, though the Clematis Borer might be unjustly tagged with an unfitting common name based on this BugGuide statement:  “Although other Alcathoe use species of Clematis (Ranunculaceae) as larval hosts, earlier reports of carolinensis on this host have been called into question and no Clematis species were found within 160 meters of the Tennessee collection site.” No larval host and no common name are included in the Butterflies and Moths of North America site.

That makes sense — the photo that I sent actually shows the insect on a clematis leaf!
Thanks!!  I enjoy the site.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: What kind of bug is this?
Location: Ontario, canada
July 29, 2014 6:14 pm
Found this in my backyard, but have never seen it before.
Signature: Chelsea

Clearwing

Lesser Peachtree Borer

Hi Chelsea,
Though it resembles a wasp, this is actually a Clearwing Moth in the family Sesiidae, and many members of the family are effective mimics of wasps, a physical attribute that acts as protective mimicry.  The defenseless Clearwing will be avoided by many predators who have previously been stung by wasps.  Many Clearwings look similar, and we will attempt to identify your species later today as we now have some house keeping to which to attend.  You can see many examples of Clearwing Moths on BugGuide.
  Though we at first claimed we would attempt a more thorough identification later, we decided to give it a quick try, and we believe this is a Lesser Peachtree Borer, Synanthedon pictipes, based on images posted to BugGuide where it states:  “Larvae tunnel under the bark and in the twigs and branches of cultivated and wild peaches, plums and cherries (Prunus), Amelanchier, apples (Malus spp.) and pears (Pyrus) (all Rosaceae).”

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination