Subject: Gem on legs
Location: Teresopolis, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
March 2, 2014 9:19 am
We spent about half an hour chasing this beauty with our camera, randomly shooting and battling the autofocus sabotage system.
It was parading on the main paved road of the Serra dos Orgaos National Park, Teresopolis.
The colours remind me of a pest beetle from my youth, an American import which was harmfull to our European crops during the 80′s.
But the form and texture of its shield are more complex.
Signature: LickaFoot

Stink Bug Nymph

Stink Bug Nymph

Dear LickaFoot,
This is an immature Stink Bug nymph in the family Pentatomidae, or possibly a nymph of a Shield Bug in a closely related family Scutelleridae.  We are posting the image and we hope to be able to provide you with a species identification soon.  Shield Bugs are sometimes called Jewel Bugs because of their bright metallic coloration.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Prehistoric Snout Creature
Location: Guapimirim, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
March 2, 2014 9:23 am
Dear Bugman,
During our recent visit to the Atlantic Rainforests of Brazil we encountered many strange visitors in our poussada near the Serra dos Orgaos National Park in Teresopolis.
This particular one was allso known by our host Leandro, though not by name …
Roughly about 5 cm size. Not very agile and completely silent.
Signature: Lickafoot

Tropical Weevil

Tropical Weevil

Dear Lickafoot,
This beetle is classified as a Weevil, and it looks very similar to a Tropical Weevil,
Brentus anchorago, sometimes found in southern Florida that we have posted several times to our site.  According to BugGuide, it is:  “widespread in neotropics: Mexico, West Indies, South America. In North America, found only in southernmost Florida.”  There is a photo of Brentus anchorago on our sister site from Brazil, Insetologia.

Subject: Weird pod I’m hoping will hatch a wonderful creature
Location: Brooklyn, NY
March 1, 2014 2:38 pm
Hi Bugman–
Yesterday my daughter and I found this strange pod under some oak trees in Prospect Park, Brooklyn, NY. It looks like some kind of cocoon–it has an imprint of a leaf on what seems like a hardened foamy surface. We’ve had a lot of storms lately so all kinds of things have been shaken lose from trees. It’s about two inches long.
Also, if it is some kind of cocoon, how should I care for it?
Signature: Carol Vinzant, editor, animaltourism.com

Cecropia Moth Cocoon

Cecropia Moth Cocoon

Dear Carol,
If it is viable, this Giant Silk Moth Cocoon will produce a gorgeous once the weather warms.  Keeping it indoors with warmth due to artificial heat will cause it to eclose early and result in a sterile death without reproduction. Giant Silkmoths only live long enough to mate and lay eggs, and they have atrophied mothparts, so they can’t even eat.  We believe this is either the cocoon of a Luna Moth or of a Polyphemus Moth.

Wow, that’s fantastic! I can’t wait to see what happens.
I didn’t understand from your message if I should keep it indoors or out. Right now it’s in a sheltered area with outdoor temperatures. When do they hatch?
Carol Vinzant

We don’t know what the ambient temperature needs to be before eclosion will occur, but we suspect it will hatch in the spring.

Great, thanks for all your help.
I blogged about the cocoon and your answer here: http://animaltourism.com/news/2014/03/13/what-to-do-with-cocoons-falling-from-late-winter-trees
Carol Vinzant
animaltourism.com

Thanks for the kind website plug Carol.

Update:  June 19, 2014:  Cocoon Hatches into Polyphemus Moth
thanks again for your help on this. it hatched the first week of june! it was a polyphemus. we released it back to the park.
http://animaltourism.com/news/2014/06/19/mystery-cocoon-revealed-giant-polyphemus-moth
Carol Vinzant

Polyphemus Moth

Polyphemus Moth

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: please help identify
Location: Candelon, NW Dominican Republic
March 1, 2014 8:15 am
Hi, This bug appeared in my gazebo recently here in the Dominican Republic. There are many types of bugs here but this is the first time I’ve seen this one. It measures approx 2″.
Our Haitian boys here tell me it’s dangerous an can kill a horse if bitten, but I think (hope !)that is probably an exaggeration. Body appears like black velvet. It seemed to be grazing on the newly painted concrete floor.
Any clue to what it is ?
Signature: Alistair Young

Tarantula Hawk

Tarantula Hawk

Dear Alistair,
This magnificent Spider Wasp is commonly called a Tarantula Hawk, but we cannot provide the exact species for you.  Female Tarantula Hawks hunt for Tarantulas, stinging them to paralyze them.  The Tarantula is then buried after the female Tarantula Hawk lays an egg on it.  The still living Tarantula provides a source of fresh meat for the developing larval wasp which feeds on the helpless, Tarantula.

Subject: Hawk Moth
Location: Sydney
February 28, 2014 4:37 pm
Hi guys. In the past few weeks we’ve had a hawk moth on your from verandah (in northern Sydney NSW). Last night we had another similar one and i wanted to see if they were the same? I know one is a coequosa australisiae, not sure if maybe ones a female and the other a male? Or the same one thats matured? The plainer one is from 3 weeks ago and the orange one is from last night. Thanks!!
Signature: Libby

Hawkmoth:  Coequosa australasiae

Hawkmoth: Coequosa australasiae

Hi Libby,
Both of your moths are the same species, and your identification is correct.  They are both
Coequosa australasiae.  Hawkmoths tend to be long lived as moths go, and they might even both be the same individual.  Like many moths, Coequosa australasiae has underwings that are more brightly colored than the upper wings which serve as camouflage.  You can see a matching image on Csiro.

Hawkmoth:  Coequosa australisiae

Hawkmoth: Coequosa australisiae

Subject: Ant mimic true bug
Location: Osa Peninsula, Costa Rica
February 28, 2014 7:16 am
My husband and I found this early instar bug while in Corcovado NP, Costa Rica in February 2014. It was definitely mimicking an ant. It was one of the neatest insects we saw during our trip. Thank you!
Signature: Laura

Ant Mimic

Ant Mimic might be Peanut Headed Bug

Hi Laura,
This is such a strange looking creature.  We wonder if it might be an immature Peanut Headed Bug.  We have a photo of hatchling Peanut Headed Bugs on our site, but no early instar nymphs.

Thank you! It does look like an early instar peanut-headed bug! Interesting that the early instars are ant mimics. We thought it was an ant at first until we took a closer look.