A beetle like insect with really long antennae.
Sat, Jul 4, 2009 at 7:20 PM
I have no idea what this bug is. It was so intriguing, however, I took about 40 pictures of it! I think it’s a beetle, since it can fly and its wings are hidden under a hard shell. It had black and white stripes.
Please identify this bug!
Grants Pass, Oregon

Banded Alder Borer

Banded Alder Borer

Your insect is a Banded Alder Borer, Rosalia funebris, which is sometimes called a California Laurel Borer, but according to Charles Hogue in Insects of the Los Angeles Basin “it does not use California laurel (Umbellaria species) as a primary host.”  According to BugGuide, the  “Larvae feed in dead hardwood trees: maple, alder, oak, willow, etc.”  Some borer beetles attack living trees, but this is not the case with the Banded Alder Borer.

Banded Alder Borer

Banded Alder Borer

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

digging bee/wasp green stripes on back metalic green eyes
Sat, Jul 4, 2009 at 9:55 AM
Was hoping you could indentify these bees. there are at least 30 to 40 that just stared showing up and digging in our flowerbed.
act1guy
madera, CA (central valley)

Sand Wasp

Sand Wasp

Dear act1guy,
This is a Sand Wasp in the genus Bembix.  We look forward to seeing these wasps each summer.  The two places in Los Angeles where we encounter them are in the Los Angeles River near the Glendale Narrows and near Union Station downtown at the freeway underpass when we walk to a film lab.  The Bembix Sand Wasps or Digger Wasps. according to Charles Hogue in his wonderful book Insects of the Los Angeles Basin, are:  “characteristic inhabitants of dry sandy areas such as beach bluffs and mesas, sand dunes and arroyos;  I have seen them working in the long jump pit on the track at the University of Southern California.  They fly low and rapidly over the ground seeking prey and tending their burrow nests.  The nests are shallow tubes running obliquely into the soil;  each contains a single larva, which the female keeps supplied with a diet of fresh flies and other insects.  In practicing this form of continuous provisioning of the larvae, sand wasps differ from spider wasps, mud daubers, and many other digging wasps, which provide only a single cache of food that must last throughout the larva’s development.  Sand wasps are not social insects, as are hornets and yellow jackets; yet, as a result of the tendency of individuals to nest in the same area, a type of colony develops.”  So, Sand Wasps help to eliminate an overabundance of flies which often plague us humans during the hot summer months.

Possible Lime Hawk introduction to NW Washington State
Sat, Jul 4, 2009 at 8:02 PM
Greetings
Early today my mother was in the back yard and discovered these motrhs in the midst of breeding. We took pictures and then she went back and captured one of them.We had never seen anything like it( and since they don’t seem to be indigenous , I know why…)
Dave Hinds
Samish Island ,Washingon

Mating One-Eyed Sphinxes

Mating One-Eyed Sphinxes

Hi Dave,
Despite the resemblance to the introduced Lime Hawk Moth we just posted, your mating One-Eyed Sphinxes, Smerinthus cerisyi, are in fact native to the U.S. and range in Washington state.  You can read more about this lovely moth on Bill Oehlke’s excellent website.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Are these Bed Bugs?
Sat, Jul 4, 2009 at 4:39 AM
I found some bugs in my bed a few months ago and concluded that they were bed-bugs. I found a lot of them under the matress, so I sprayed an insecticide to get rid of them.
They seem to be back, but much smaller now. In the photo, you can see one larger bug (which I guess is a bed-bug), and two smaller ones. Are these just young bed-bugs, or something else?
Tim
Paris, France

Bed Bugs

Bed Bugs

Hi Tim,
Sadly, your identification is correct.  All three insects in your photo are Bed Bugs, and their immature status indicates you must have breeders nearby as well.  Ordinary spray insecticide will not rid your place of Bed Bugs.  You should seed professional assistance for the eradication of your infestation.  If you rent a flat, inform the landlord.  Bed Bugs often hide under the mattress, behind pictures, and between the baseboards and the wall.  Consult BugGuide for more information on Bed Bugs.  Since Bed Bugs feed on blood, they are most troublesome.

5 inch flying bug with huge tusks
Wed, Jul 1, 2009 at 8:51 AM
The picture says it all
Jim
Jefferson, Iowa USA

Dobsonfly

Dobsonfly

Hi Jim,
Nice photo of a male Dobsonfly.

Please identify this weird bug for me.
Wed, Jul 1, 2009 at 10:44 AM
I was visiting my parents’ lake cottage in the Adirondack Mountains in mid-June and found this bug by the downstairs brick patio. It was raining heavily and he was just sitting in a dry spot. It was about 11 pm. I scooped him up in a dish and found 2 more of the same size in the same vicinity. It was very docile and didn’t freak out when I picked him up; didn’t try to strike or fight at all. He wasn’t affected by light or water. (I flushed his two friends down the toilet and they didn’t struggle at all when put into the water.) I put him in a baggie and took his picture with a measuring tape to show his size. I left him in the baggie hoping he would suffocate and I could keep his body to show people for identification, but he chewed through the baggie and disappeared. I went back to the area where I found him and his friends but haven’t seen any since. This is in a pine-y, wooded area next to a lake. Pine needles are more abundant than grass. The patio where he wa s sitting is made of brick pavers. My parents also have a jacuzzi tub on the same patio, but they were not next to it when I found them. I am at a loss, finding nothing online even close to this bug to compare. Help!
Thank you for your assistance.
Upstate New York, Adirondack Mountains, Lake Algonquin

Hellgrammite

Hellgrammite

You have found Hellgrammites, the larvae of Dobsonflies.  We really don’t condone flushing living things down the toilet.  Hellgrammites are semiaquatic and can survive total emersion for a period of time.  We would like to believe that the two individuals that were flushed will emerge unscathed at the end of the line, but that is probably just a fantasy.