Is this a bee or fly?
Tue, Jun 16, 2009 at 4:53 AM
Nearly everyday I come home from work to find one or two of what look like skinny bumblebees on my front porch clinging to the screens. The porch was just recently screened in and doesn’t have a door yet which is how they are getting on the porch. The bees/flies are pretty docile and easy to catch. I’ve been able to catch them in wads of cloth and then I just open the cloth outside and they fly away. I have a large flowerbed right outside the porch with lots of blooming flowers which is probably what is attracting them in the first place. I see plenty of the regular fat bumblebees in the garden all the time. I live in central florida and this has been going on for about a month now.
Just in case the pictures are not clear enough you can also see them in my photobucket acount, which is as follows.
Kara
central Florida, Citrus county

Bee Killer

Bee Killer

Good Morning Kara,
What a magnificent image of a Southern Bee Killer, Mallophora orcina, a species of Robber Fly that is a very convincing bumblebee mimic. Souther Bee Killers prey on insects, including bees. Its proximity to your flower bed can be explained if that flower bed is frequented by bees. BugGuide also has information on this species.  BugGuide indicates this of the genus:  “Large, fuzzy, bee-mimicking robber flies. Resemble Laphria , another genus of robbers that mimic bumblebees, but is even hairier and has antennae with a very thin terminal final segment, whereas Laphria has thick antennae.”  Your specimen has very thin antennae.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Spider beauty
Mon, Jun 15, 2009 at 4:46 PM
I found this beautiful spider today (June 15th) walking in my garden, across goldenrod, lily leaves, and onto a dead stump. It moved quickly but gracefully. I have been all through my three field guides and Bug Guide, and I can’t find anything close. I live in Newton, New Jersey, up in the northwest corner of the state. Thank you!
Jeannie
Newton, New Jersey

Male Orbweaver, we believe

Male Orbweaver, we believe

Hi Jeannie,
This is a wonderful image. Based on the presence of the well developed pedipalps, the appendages closest to the mouth, we would say that this is a male spider. Male Orbweavers tend to be very reclusive, and they are not often photographed. The considerably larger females often spin large webs in the same location for long periods of time. The females are more sedentary, preferring to stay home in the web and capture insects while the diminutive male travels in search of a mate. We would venture a guess that this may be a male Marbled Orbweaver, Araneus marmoreus, though we have not seen a photograph of one. We are basing that possible identification on the similarity of the markings on the legs and abdomen of your specimen to the images posted on BugGuide of female Marbled Orbweavers. There is much variability in the markings and coloration of many of the Araneus species, and it is possible that your specimen is another member of the genus or even one of the other genera of Orbweavers. We gladly welcome our readership to assist in this identification.

Thank you so much! Your website is wonderful. Isn’t it funny, the ways we can brighten people’s lives!
Jeannie LeBlanc

Update from Eric Eaton:
Tue, 16 Jun 2009 06:47:16 -0700 (PDT)
Daniel:
I can’t even tell what family that spider belongs in, and not sure if I know anyone else who can, either.  I’d be leaning toward a cobweb weaver (Theridiidae) or sheetweb weaver (Linyphiidae), though….
Eric

Red winged bug
Mon, Jun 15, 2009 at 5:25 PM
Dear Bugman,
I saw this red insect while hiking in Bear Canyon in the San Gabriel Mountains in June. It looked somewhat moth-like, with bright red wings that were outlined in black. It had a black head and black antennae. Could you please help identify this? Thank you!
Madena
Bear Canyon, San Gabriel Mountains, California

Lichen Moth

Lichen Moth

Hello Madena,
This is a moth;  more specifically  it is a Lichen Moth in the Tiger Moth subfamily Lithosiinae. It goes by the polysyllabic name Lycomorpha fulgens, but has no common name.  BugGuide reports the species from Arizona, New Mexico and Colorado.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

large striped beetle
Tue, Jun 9, 2009 at 11:17 AM
this beetle, probably a bit more than two or three inches was in our garage. He was struggling on his back. When I tried to turn him over, he hissed at me. I finally picked him up and put him out in the front yard. Can you tell me what he is?
Linda Williams
Marble Falls, Texas

Lined June Beetle

Lined June Beetle

Hi Linda,
This is one of the Lined June Beetles in the genus Polyphylla, probably Polyphylla occidentalis, though s
pecies identification may be difficult.  There are numerous matching images posted to BugGuide.  The genus page on BugGuide indicates:  “Food Adults feed on tree foliage, thus sometimes called ‘chafers’.
Life Cycle Eggs are laid on soil near host plants. Larvae hatch, burrow down and feed on roots of shrubs, trees, require 2-3 years to reach maturity. Pupation is in underground chambers. Adults come to lights. ”  These beetles make squeaking noises when handled.

Bug on my Sunflower
Thu, Jun 11, 2009 at 3:37 PM
This bug started showing up about 2 weeks ago – Davenport, Fl (near Orlando) Do you know what it is?
Thanks for our time,
Danny
Davenport, Fl 33837

Big Legged Bug

Big Legged Bug

Hi Danny,
This is Acanthocephala femorata , a Big Legged Bug or Leaf Footed Bug in the family Coreidae.  It is a plant feeder and is probably sucking the juices from your sunflower.

Large Beetles
Fri, Jun 12, 2009 at 6:54 AM
Could you help tell me a bit about this type of bug? I found this one on my patio, and have never seen this type of bug here. I have seen something similar to this farther east in Barstow, only it was about 6″ in length. This one was only about 2″. Have heard them called date bugs, and large cockroaches farther east, but this one was smaller and about 50 miles east of Barstow, CA.
JR
Apple Valley, CA

California Prionus

California Prionus

Hi JR,
This is a California Prionus, Prionus californicus.  We just finished posting an image of an eastern relative, the Tile Horned Prionus.  The Prionids are a group of Longicorns or Long Horned Borer Beetles.  The California Prionus has grublike larvae that bore in the wood of oaks, madrone, cottonwoods, fruit trees and Eucalyptus trees according to Charles Hogue in Insects of the Los Angeles Basin.  Your specimen is a male.  The larger female has less impressive antennae.