Spotted-Wing Drosophila Maggot
Location:  Edmonds, Washington
July 30, 2010 12:21 am
Hello Daniel, just got back from our trip (to the beach, of course) and here are the promised pics of a dratted SWD maggot found in one of my raspberries. As opposed to the normally clear raspberry juice that a bruised berry exudes, notice the opaque, milky quality to the juice that is found in the bottom of raspberries infested with the maggots, in the one pic where I’ve pinched it up from the bottom of the interior of the berry.

Cherry Vinegar Fly Maggot in Raspberry

This milky juice has consistently been a sure marker of infested berries. I included several pics for you to choose from, most including at least one drupe of the berry for size comparison.
Love the Fuzzy Bottom Girls moniker and great pics of the trio!
Cheers, BeachDee

Cherry Vinegar Fly Maggot

Hi again BeachDee,
Though we sympathize with your infestation, we are thrilled that you have supplied our readership with this recent Invasive Exotic agricultural pest from Japan, the Spotted Winged Drosophila or Cherry Vinegar Fly,
Drosophila suzukii (see BugGuide). We were inspired to collectively name the new hens as an homage to the name of the musical group The Soggy Bottom Boys in the Coen Brothers film “Oh Brother, Where Art Thou?”

Cherry Vinegar Fly Maggot

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Orange bug with irridescent spots
Location:  Chicago Suburbs, IL
July 29, 2010 10:39 pm
Hello, and thank you for this site. I check it often to try and ID a strange bug I come across. We found this guy on our fence. Then a few nights later, he was on our siding. We live in the Chicago suburbs, IL, and he was found in the summer. Thanks!

Ailanthus Webworm Moth

Hi April,
We have been getting more requests for the identification of your creature, the Ailanthus Webworm Moth, each year.  We find it interesting that the moth is native, but the primary food source, the Tree of Heaven or Ailanthus is not.  Here is what BugGuide reports:  “
Larvae live in communal webs (3). One generation a year (4). The main larval food plant (Ailanthus altissima) is also known as Tree of Heaven, Stinking Sumac, Copal Tree, or Varnish Tree, and occurs throughout most of United States and southern Canada, often planted as an ornamental in urban areas. The tree is native to Asia, and is an invasive species in North America, but the moth is native, and its range has increased, presumably, since the introduction of the tree.

Kissing bugs? And why are they congregating?
Location:  Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument, AZ
July 29, 2010 3:47 pm
Hi folks! We have been noticing in recent weeks (how could we not?!) that these bugs have been congregating in large numbers on the park offices security gate around sunrise.

Seed Bugs

They somewhat resemble kissing bugs/assassin bugs in appearance but are much smaller than species we are familar with.

Seed Bugs

Questions: Are they in fact kissing bugs, and if so, do they suck vertebrate blood? There were no birds or other wildlife hanging around for a feast, so are they unpalatable to wildlife? And finally, why would they be attracted to the gate’s electronics and lights? Thanks,
Ed Kuklinski, Sarah Howard
Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument, AZ
Ed Kuklinski, Sarah Howard

Aggregation of Seed Bugs

Hi Ed,
Your documentation of aggregating Seed Bugs is fantastic.  They appear to be
Melacoryphus lateralis, based on images posted to BugGuide, which notes: “Often comes to lights. Reported in large numbers especially in July/August in Arizona, Nevada, other western states. Many insects are attracted to lights, and we have no theory why they are attracted to the electronics.  To the best of our knowledge, Seed Bugs are not unpalatable.  Your photo of the lamp post is especially fascinating.  We just posted a photo of unidentified nymphs from Arizona, and we wonder if they might be immature Seed Bugs.

Seed Bugs attracted to light

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Mysterious Beetle
Location:  Casa Grande, AZ
July 27, 2010 7:47 am
I found this beetle just walking across the floor at work. It does not appear to fly and it moves pretty slowly. It likes to play dead. It can flip itself over quite easily with its long legs. It did something like a headstand once, but it has not released any nasty smells or blistering agents, so it doesn’t seem to have that kind of defense.
The underside is of the abdomen is smooth, while the top of the abdomen is covered in tiny bumps. The antennae are short, divided into tiny, somewhat v-shaped segments, uniform, and consist of a single strand with no branching. The mandibles are small and there’s little, if any, gap between them and the head.
Here are some pictures with a ruler for scale. On the picture of the top of the beetle, you can see both the inches and mm side of the ruler. The picture of the underside shows only the inches side of the ruler.
Do you guys know what this thing is? I’m told that they’re fairly common, but I’ve never seen one before and nobody knows what they’re called.

Darkling Beetle

Update: I think I solved this one myself by looking at a few more
pictures on your site.  There are just too many kinds of beetles.  I’m
99% sure now, but I would appreciate a confirmation, though.
Death Feigning Beetle
Species Cryptoglossa variolosa
Seems like it has an apt name.  It played dead any time I went near
it.  Note that this one was originally covered in sand or dust giving
it a whitish appearance, like I see in many other pictures.  This one
got a bath before its photo shoot, which is why it’s solid black.  It
was then released, avoiding unnecessary carnage.

Darkling Beetle

Hi Matt,
YOur beetle is a Darkling Beetle in the family Tenebrionidae, but we are having issues matching it to a species.  It looks quite similar to
Asbolus verrucosus, which is pictured on BugGuide,  though that species appears to be gray while your specimen is black.

P.S.  The Death Feigning Beetle you cited is in the same tribe, Centriopterini, as the Darkling Beetle we cited.  We will check with Eric Eaton to see if he can provide a conclusive answer. Read Full Post →

High altitude oddity
Location:  Mt. Mitchell, North Carolina, USA
July 29, 2010 8:19 am
Hi there!
I took this photo on Jult 10th, 2010 at about 4500 ft elevation near Mt Mitchell, NC, USA on the Blue Ridge Parkway. The closest ID I have is possibly some kind of thread-waisted wasp, but the antenna are feathered like a moth’s would be. It appears to be missing 2 legs on the left side, but otherwise seemed in good shape. Any idea what this may be?
Tony Murray

Crane Fly

Hi Tony,
This is a Crane Fly, and judging by his pectinate antennae, we believe he is a male.  He seems to resemble the image of
Ctenophora apicata that is posted on the Crane Flies of Pennsylvania website.  We are going to copy Dr. Chen Young who may be able to provide an identification for us, and we suspect he may request permission to post your image to his comprehensive website as well.

Confirmation from Dr. Chen Young
Hi Daniel,
You are getting better in identifying crane flies.  Yes, it is a male Ctenophora apicata.

Tarantula Hawk?
Location:  CA Central Coast hills above Monterey Bay
July 29, 2010 10:59 am
From pictures of wasps I went through on your website, I’m guessing what I removed from my house was a Tarantula Hawk Wasp. Saw one last year in the yard. We have plenty of tarantulas here for it to choose from, usually see those crawling around in April and November. I caught and released it on a sunny 80 degree day.
James Romeo

Tarantula Hawk

Hi James,
Your identification of a Tarantula Hawk is correct.