large fly looking dead insect.
Fri, Dec 19, 2008 at 4:39 PM
We found this one ( dead already ) on the ground along the grand canyon, az. It was at least 3 inches long and had these striking stripes on its back end and these large eyeballs! the kids thought this was so neat looking and because of its size it was a bit shocking that it was dead.
anyhoo – I have been trying to identify it and have had no luck. can anyone help?
thanks so much!
claudia and kids ( thomas hannah emma and lilly)
grand canyon arizona

Giant Robber Fly

Giant Robber Fly

Hi Claudia and Kids,
Now that the semester is finally finished and we have submitted our grades, we are trying to send Christmas cards to friends and family.  WE have been neglecting our web site email and have only been posting one or two letters a day.  We are happy to inform you that this is a predatory Robber Fly, probably a Giant Robber Fly in the genus Promachus.  We believe it may be Promachus sackeni which is found in Arizona according to BugGuide, but we would like to have an expert opinion to substantiate this identification.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

What is this flying orange & black bug? Beetle?
Thu, Dec 18, 2008 at 4:47 PM
I would be very interested in knowing what kind of bug this is. Looks orange and black. It was flying in and around some big melon leafs and landed for a moment, thus the still photo. I’m 51 years of age and have never seen a bug like this.
Steve Milwaukee, WI USA
Milwaukee, WI USA 53214

Squash Vine Borer

Squash Vine Borer

Hi Steve,
Though your letter does not indicate when this insect was noticed, we have a sneaky suspicion it was not seen this week in Wisconsin. This is a Squash Vine Borer, Melittia cucurbitae, a Clearwing wasp mimic moth in the family Sesiidae.

Hello Daniel Marlos – Bugman,
I thank you very much for identifying the insect photos I sent. I took the photos this last summer 08-02-08 @ 11:17am and have had them in my photos. I knew I had you web site in my favorites but my file system is a mess and just came across it the other day. Thank you again as the wife will enjoy the identification also.
Steve Milwaukee

Missouri Butterly
Thu, Dec 18, 2008 at 1:05 PM
Poor quality photo from phone camera. Out of Houston, MO. What kind is it or is it not a butterfly but a moth? Thank you
Bobby from MO
Houston, MO

Goatweed Leafwing

Goatweed Leafwing

Hi Bobby,
Even though your photo is quite blurry, we are nonetheless excited to post it because it represents a new species for our website.  This is a Goatweed Leafwing Butterfly, Anaea andria.   Leafwings are mainly a tropical group of butterflies in the subfamily Charaxinae.  According to Jeffrey Glassberg in the book Butterflies Through Binoculars The West, the Goatweed Leafwing: “often flies as if swooping up and down on ocean waves. Overwintering individuals have more pointed FWs [forewings] than summer individuals.” We tried to make this post yesterday morning, but we lost our Time Warner internet connection mysteriously.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Dead-Leaf Mantis
Thu, Dec 18, 2008 at 5:49 PM
This insect was found in Panama, deep in the jungle near the border of Colombia. We think it may be some kind of dead-leaf mantis. Can anyone help us out? Thanks!
Curious
Panama

Unknown Mantis from Panama

Unknown Mantis from Panama

Dear Curious,
While we cannot take the time right now to properly identify your mantis because we have to rush out to give a final examination, we hope one of our faithful readers can assist in the identification of this well camouflaged specimen. Hopefully, when the semester ends, we will be able to devote a bit more time to the identification process.

Update: Wed, Feb 4, 2009 at 2:33 PM
Hi Daniel:
This looks like Acanthops falcata. It is primarily a South American Species, but does occur in Panama (officially) and apparently as far north as Honduras. Common names appear to be (South American) Dead Leaf Mantis and Boxer Mantis, but both of these names are also used for other mantis species in other places. Both sexes have wings but the females are flightless. The photo by ‘Curious’ is probably a male. Regards.
Karl
Links: http://nathistoc.bio.uci.edu/Honduras/Orthoptera/Acanthops.htm
http://godofinsects.com/museum/display.php?sid=1631

Moth with a “monkey on his back”
Tue, Dec 16, 2008 at 4:41 PM
Moth with a “monkey on his back”
Dear WTB,
This moth was hanging out on a birdhouse on our porch this summer. We live in Hagerstown, MD- between PA and WV. My son called out that it looked like it had a monkey face on its back- maybe a defense mechanism? Thought you might like to see it! Love your site!!
ABX Moser
The panhandle and valley of Western MD

Pink Spotted Hawkmoth

Pink Spotted Hawkmoth

Dear ABX Moser,
Your Sphinx Moth is a Pink Spotted Hawkmoth, Agrius cingulata which you can read more about on Bill Oehlke’s excellent website. If it had opened its wings, you would see the distinctive pink spotting on the abdomen and the pink stripes on the hind wings.

Butterfly? Moth?
Tue, Dec 16, 2008 at 2:33 PM
Hey Dan !
Merry Christmas.
Back in August this creature was fluttering around, landing on
leafs, seemingly looking for a place to deposit eggs ?
Appeared more iridescent than show in the photo. Are you familiar with it?
Thanks,
Ferd Hall
Lawrencevill,GA
(Just north of Atlanta)

Red Spotted Purple

Red Spotted Purple

Hi Ferd,
Your butterfly is a Red Spotted Purple, Limenitis arthemis.  There are several subspecies of this lovely butterfly, including the White Admiral.