Subject: what is this big insect?
Location: Comox VAlley, Vancouver Island
July 29, 2015 11:31 pm
Dear bugman, this insect came buzzed by us this evening, July 29, 2015. It is the biggest I have seen yet in Southern Coastal BC. We live on the East Coast of Vancouver Island, in the Comox Valley. Our house is by a creek in a semi-forested, green belt area which gives us great opportunity for observation of our flora and fauna. This insect flew by slowly, at first I thought it was a juvenile hummingbird or huge moth. It made no sound other than with its wings when it was flying and did not move very fast. In fact it was still most of the time. I took many pictures, most of them not very sharp. I picked the best ones and hope you can help me figure out what it is that was visiting us. Is it a cicada? a cicada eater? It has stripes on its abdomen, like a wasp. It has those short club-like antennae that remind me of a fly. It has a very small head relative to its body, and is antennae and the outer portions of its legs are yellow.
Signature: Monika on Morrison Creek

Elm Sawfly

Elm Sawfly

Dear Monika,
This Elm Sawfly is a non-stinging member of the insect order that includes Wasps and Bees.  The larvae of the Elm Sawfly are frequently confused for caterpillars.

Elm Sawfly

Elm Sawfly

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Subject: Large insect with wasp prey
Location: West coast of British Columbia
July 29, 2015 3:43 pm
I took these photos on July 29/15 in the town of Nanaimo, on the west coast of British Columbia. This awesome creature was on a salal leaf, in a dry forest of Douglas fir, hemlock, and arbutus. I wanted to get a side view shot as well, but it must have been bothered by my intrusion into its juicy meal, and flew away. Can you tell what species it is? I think I’ve narrowed it down to the Laphria genus, Robber flies.
Thanks a lot. Love your site!
Signature: John Segal

Bee-Like Robber Fly eats Yellowjacket

Bee-Like Robber Fly eats Yellowjacket

Dear John,
Because of the thick antennae that helps to identify the genus, we agree that this is a Bee-Like Robber Fly in the genus
Laphria, and after searching through 10 pages of species on BugGuide, we have narrowed down the possibilities to five species that have yellow thoracic hair and that generally resemble your individual, which appears to be feeding on a Yellowjacket based on this facial closeup on BugGuide.    The abdomen on Laphria fernaldi appears too orange to be your species.  In alphabetical order, the most similar looking species on BugGuide are:  Laphria astur Laphria janusLaphria partitor and Laphria unicolor.  Of those, we believe the images of Laphria astur on BugGuide look the closest, but we are by no means experts in the identification of Robber Flies.  Thanks for your excellent Food Chain contribution, and in the future, we can accept larger digital files to ensure the highest quality of the images on our site.

Bee-Like Robber Fly eats Yellow Jacket

Bee-Like Robber Fly eats Yellowjacket

Hi Daniel,
Thanks very much for helping me identify an insect I’ve never seen before.  I really appreciate it.
Those photos are about 650 X 450 KB; the size I use for email. Let me know if you’d like me to send them again, as larger files, and what the maximum size is that you can receive.
Thanks again.  Excellent website you have there!
John

Hi John,
We can easily accept 5MB files.  We are then able to crop into details like the antennae on this Bee-Like Robber Fly.  You may send them larger and we will crop to some details.

Hi Daniel,
Great! Okay, here are my two photos, each about 1.7 MB.
Thanks again for your great website, and all the work you do for us bug-curious types!
John

Bee-Like Robber Fly eats Yellowjacket

Bee-Like Robber Fly eats Yellowjacket

Thanks for sending the higher resolution files.  Since you already cropped the images the first time, we were not able to magnify much more, but we did move a bit closer.

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Subject: What is this?
Location: Illinois
July 29, 2015 8:41 am
This bug literally flew onto my patio door right as I was about to let my dog out. Noticing the weird thing, i had to stop and take pictures. It looks like it almost is a conjoined twin? I have no idea what it could be, either.
Signature: Hayley P

Mating Crane Flies

Mating Crane Flies

Dear Hayley,
While this may look like conjoined twins, it is actually a pair of Crane Flies in flagrante delicto.  Mating Crane Flies are not the only insects that are able to fly while in the act, but their gangly appearance with their long legs makes them an especially memorable sighting.

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Subject: Green and yellow beetle
Location: West virginia
July 29, 2015 7:23 am
Curious to what this crazy colorful bug is?
Signature: Thanks jeff

Green June Beetle

Green June Beetle

Hi Jeff,
This is a Green June Beetle,
Cotinus nitida.

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Subject: Beetle
Location: Arabela, New Mexico
July 29, 2015 9:54 am
Can you identify this beetle?
Signature: bug man

Female Ox Beetle

Female Ox Beetle

This is a female Ox Beetle in the genus Strategus, and though there are several species pictured on BugGuide, we believe this is most likely Strategus aloeus based on both the listed range and this image of a female pictured on BugGuide.  We must say we were terribly amused by your image titled “Beetle Butt” because most folks would be inclined to include an image of the head of a beetle they wanted identified.  Perhaps because of the proximity to the letters G and T on the keyboard, we seem to regularly receive requests from folks who want “buts” identified, but in your case, you really did want a butt identified.

Female Ox Beetle

Female Ox Beetle:  Beetle Butt

Thanks for your prompt reply, Daniel!  So happy to know what she is.  Your email made me giggle; thanks.

We strive to amuse while providing the most accurate information we can.

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Subject: Help identify this beetle?! please
Location: Vellore, India ; Bangalore, India
July 29, 2015 6:44 am
Greetings Mr Bugman
I have come across this particular insect (which I assume is a Beetle) since my childhood . Unfortunately for me, it has been very hard to identify this bug because to my knowledge it is not known by any specific name in any of the Indian languages I speak. Add to this the fact that environment conservation and species identification takes a backseat in developing countries has made it hard for me to crosscheck with any National Database. I would like to know if this insect could be endemic to my country for I did not find any references to it any of the Google searches. Also, they mate during July – I have always found it intriguing to find a pair of them attached at their hinds ,walking busily with one walking backwards. I haven’t specifically noticed if the females and males are physiologically different. I found this site by chance and felt this would be a good place to have my curiosity quenched. I am attaching two recent photos of the insect. I must apologise as the pictures may not be of good quality. Thanks in advance.
PS: I have found this insect in South India, not the North
Signature: Varun Bharadwaj

Predatory Red Bug

Predatory Red Bug

Dear Varun,
These look like Red Bugs in the family Pyrrhocoridae, and in one of your images, it appears that one individual is eating another.  Several years ago we posted an image of a predatory Red Bug from India that was eventually identified as
Antilochus conqueberti.  Members of this family are frequently found in multigenerational aggregations like the one you have included, and close inspection of that image reveals that there are several mating pairs among the crowd.  To the best of our knowledge, this is an endemic species in India.  Here is a FlickR image for comparison, but it is identified as Antilochus cocqueberti.  The Journal of Entomology and Zoology Studies site identifies this Pyrrhocorid predator as Antilochus conqueberti.

Aggregation of Red Bugs

Aggregation of Red Bugs

Hi
First things first – thank you so much for such a prompt response and I am sorry to have sent so many requests to an already overworked staff.
Now that I have the Family and Order of the insect ( Antilochus conqueberti), I am able to get more relevant results from Google Searches . From what I have found, it appears that this insect is spread across Yunnan of China and Thailand as well. The possibility that it is “cannibalistic” is simply shocking. I have come across references to it as being a pest in Cotton Crops and with studies being conducted to identify a potent insecticide for it.
I have also heard someone mention that it is poisonous. Any way to validate that claim? Also, are they capable of  feeding on Humans?
Lastly, I have another picture of them aggregated in a mound. Would you guys be interested in it?
Varun Bharadwaj

Mating Red Bugs

Mating Red Bugs

Hi again Varun,
At this time, we cannot verify if they are poisonous, but we doubt it.  They do not suck human blood.  The previous images you sent are sufficient.

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