Subject: South African Grasshopper
Location: False Bay, Western Cape, South Africa
December 28, 2013 4:54 am
I’m having trouble identifying this little chap I found in my garden – he is only a couple of centimetres long, and nothing in my insect book looks quite like him.
I’m new to the Bug world, so not sure yet quite how diverse the colours get within some classifications, and would appreciate a definitive identification !
Thank you.
Signature: Cathy

Grasshopper

Grasshopper

Hi Cathy,
This is an immature Grasshopper, and it is generally adult insects that are picture in guide books, which may be the reason you are having difficulty in your identification.  Alas, we haven’t the necessary skills with South African species to be able to provide you with an identification, but perhaps one of our readers will write in with something helpful.  Your photos are quite beautiful.

Grasshopper

Grasshopper

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Curious to what it is??
Location: North America (Oklahoma)
December 28, 2013 10:12 am
Hi, I found this little guy crawling on me. ( I assume it is a transfer from my dog) but not sure what it is. Thanks in advance
Signature: Sincerely, DH

Human Louse or other Louse???

Human Louse or other Louse???

Dear DH,
This is a Louse, and we don’t believe there is enough detail in your image to make a conclusive identification, but it looks suspiciously like a Human Louse,
Pediculus humanus, that is pictured on BugGuide.  You can get much helpful information from the Penn State University Entomology Department fact sheet on Human Lice, including:  “Anyone can get lice no matter how clean they are about their personal hygiene and their homes. Lice do not feed on dirt; they feed on blood! People get lice from people. They don’t come from pets. (Dog and cat lice do not infest man.)”  The image of the Dog Louse, Trichodectes canis, on Molecular Expressions:  Science, Optics & You as well as the image on BugGuide look different than your image.

Subject: Two Striped Walking Stick
Location: Daytona Beach, FL
December 23, 2013 9:49 am
Just thought this female was cool. She was hanging out on the side of the house and my grandpa scooped her up for me to see. We put her back after the photo and she went on her merry way.
Signature: Lindsey

Muskmare

Muskmare

Hi Lindsey,
Thanks for sending us your photo.  We want to caution you that the Two Striped Walkingstick, also known as a Muskmare, is capable of expelling a noxious substance with amazing accuracy.  They have a knack for aiming right at a perceived predator’s eyes.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: florida bug
Location: south florida
December 26, 2013 8:34 pm
What is it?
Signature: mary

Dragonfly with missing abdomen

Green Darner with missing abdomen

Hi Mary,
Some predator, probably a bird, caught this Dragonfly and ate the abdomen, leaving the less palatable head, wings and legs for you to find.  Your Dragonfly is a Green Darner,
Anax junius, and you can read up more on this species on BugGuide where it states:  “Adults are strong flyers and may be found anywhere but are more common near larval habitat: still marshy waters, fresh and slightly brackish.”  

Subject: what is this bug? it has a nasty bite/sting
Location: Southern California
December 28, 2013 2:54 am
This bug was on edge of my glass when I went to take a drink and it did something to the edge of my lip that felt like I was stuck with a shard of glass. Still hurts about half hour later. While I’m in Southern California (USA), my glass is sitting right next to our Christmas tree so I suspect he could have been imported from areas growing Noble Pine trees.
Signature: B

Assassin Bug Nymph

Assassin Bug Nymph

Hi B,
The best we are able to provide for you is a general family identification as there isn’t much detail in your photo.  This appears to be an immature Assassin Bug in the family Reduviidae, and they are predators with mouths designed to pierce and suck fluids.  While there is a subfamily Triatominae with members known as Kissing Bugs that suck blood and are a known disease vector for humans, however, we can eliminate that subfamily because the shape is wrong.  Other Assassin Bugs prey on insects and arthropods, however, most are capable of biting humans as well if they are threatened or carelessly handled.  For some reason, we get a disproportionate number of accounts of Assassin Bugs in the genus
Zelus as well as Assassin Bugs in the subfamily Peirantinae, the Corsairs, that will bite humans unprovoked.  There is an immediate sharp pain associated with the bite, exactly as you describe, and the area may remain tender for several days, however, the bite is not considered serious.  We are sorry we are unable to provide anything more conclusive on this Assassin Bug nymph.  Your supposition that this Assassin Bug arrived with the Christmas tree is a strong possibility, however, living in Southern California, it might have been a local species as well.

Subject: pupa?
Location: san diego ca.
December 27, 2013 10:32 am
found this on Christmas morning attached to my outdoor umbrella! I’ve looked through countless photos and can’t find it. Can you help ID it. Thanks
Signature: don’t understand queastion

California Mantis Oothica

California Mantis Oothica

The signature is the name you would like used when we post images and questions.  This is the Oothica or Egg Case of a Preying Mantis, and based on the similarity to this image from BugGuide, it is an Oothica from the native California Mantis, Stagmomantis californica.  The oothica that are sold by nurseries as organic means of controlling pest species in the garden are generally from non-native Preying Mantids that are larger and more aggressive than our native mantids.  While we applaud the good intentions of gardeners who want to use natural means for pest control, we fear that our native Mantids are being displaced and perhaps eaten by their non-native relatives.  This Oothica appears to have already hatched into approximately fifty tiny mantids.  Here is a photo from our archives of the hatching Oothica a different species of Mantis.  We also recently photographed a nymph of a California Mantis in our own Mount Washington, Los Angeles garden.