Subject: Black and Red with White Spots
Location: 92595 [Wildomar, California]
April 19, 2014 4:11 pm
I just found this in my backyard and want to know if he will be bad for my vegetables, grapes and fruit trees. I’ve narrowed it down to either a Milkweed Bug or a Box Elder Bug… but don’t know.
Signature: Joseph Morabito

Small Milkweed Bug

Small Milkweed Bug

Dear Joseph,
You did a very good job of narrowing this identification to two similar looking species.  This is actually a Small Milkweed Bug,
Lygaeus kalmii, and we do not believe it will cause any significant problems in your garden.  Citations on BugGuide include:  “Adults suck nectar from flowers of various herbaceous plants, and also feed on milkweed seeds(?). Also reported to be scavengers and predators, especially in spring when milkweed seeds are scarce. They have been reported feeding on honey bees, monarch caterpillars and pupae, and dogbane beetles, among others. The Life of a Californian Population of the Facultative Milkweed Bug Lygaeus kalmii.  Adults mainly feed on milkweed seeds, but they often consume nectar from various flowers. Harvard Entomology.”

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Stunning and Curious Grasshopper
Location: Marloth Park, South Africa
April 18, 2014 3:49 am
Hello bugpeople!
… And would it, by any chance, leave a hard yellow, white and black striped “shell” when it dies? I recently found one on the ground that looks similar to his body. But we’ve also seen a lot of furry yellow black and white striped caterpillars that I’ve been unable to identify (last pic)
I appreciate your help! Thank you!
Tomorrow I’ll go outside and see if I can find that “skin” and take a photo. It looks like it has little feet attached to it.Almost like what a millipede would have but it’s striped – yellow, black, white.
Cheers,
Signature: Kenda

Possibly Lappet Moth Caterpillar

Possibly Lappet Moth Caterpillar

Sat, Apr 19, 2014 at 5:27 AM
I took two photos of the caterpillar “shell” thingy. It has lost a lot of color since I last saw it. It’s now become a dull grayish, and it’s falling apart. All the little rings are coming loose. I wonder if it’s not the shell of the caterpillar we’ve been seeing around here (3rd pic). Should I be posting this on your site? I’ll gladly do so.
No pressure about getting back with me. I imagine you all receive tons of emails.
Many thanks!
Cheers,
Kenda

Millipede Exoskeleton

Millipede Exoskeleton

The exoskeleton is unrelated to either the caterpillar or the grasshopper.  This is a millipede exoskeleton.

Goodness. Thank you!  I’m working on my next blog post. I will send you an email when it’s published. Hopefully it will help drive some traffic to your site, but then again, maybe you have too much traffic already!
Thank you, kindly, Mr. Marlos!
Cheers,
Kenda

Hi again Kenda,
The caterpillar might be a Lappet Moth Caterpillar in the family Lasiocampidae, though we were unable to locate a matching image on ISpot.
  The Millipede might have fallen prey to Millipede Assassin Bugs or a Glowworm.

Oh wow. I didn’t even realize you were working on this one!  Thank you. We’ve seen about 6 of these caterpillars around the house (3 coming inside), and they are moving fast. I’ve taken them all out and watched 2 climb the outside wall and disappear in the rafters. I figured they were looking for a place to hang and pupate, but they disappeared.
Thank you again, SO much for your help!
Cheers,
Kenda

Subject: Black & Maroon Fuzzy Beetle
Location: Carson City, NV
April 18, 2014 11:53 pm
Hi Bugman & crew! We took a mountain hike this afternoon & found this beauty. I’d say it was just under an inch long. Found him on a gorgeous 70-degree day in the Sierra Nevada Mountains of Northern Nevada – Carson City, specifically. I’ve tried to search the web & your site for identification but every search wants it to be a velvet ant, which I know it’s definitely not! Thanks for your help!
Signature: Michelle Pedersen

Paracotalpa ursina

Paracotalpa ursina

Dear Michelle,
You are correct.  This is not a Velvet Ant.  It is a Scarab in the subfamily Rutelinae, the Shining Leaf Chafers, and sadly, it does not have a common name, but we have identified it as
Paracotalpa ursina.  There is also an image on CalPhotos where it is identified as a Little Bear, a reference to its scientific species name.  The Sam Wells Bug Page has a nice account of an encounter with Little Bears near Fresno.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: What is this bug?
Location: El Pueblito, Corregidora, Queretaro, Mexico.
April 17, 2014 1:56 pm
I found this little bug over my leg when I was sitting on a bench outside my house. Ive never seen this kind of insect befere so I decided to take it home to take a few shots of it. It almost look like somebody painted on it, its really beautiful. I hope its not poisonous because I threw it away very close from home.
Signature: Oscar Vazquez

Giant Mesquite Bug Nymph

Giant Mesquite Bug Nymph

Hi Oscar,
The bold colors and markings on this Giant Mesquite Bug nymph make it quite unforgettable. 

Subject: Unknown Beetle ?
Location: Arizona, United States
April 17, 2014 12:39 pm
This beetle like insect appeared yesterday on my block wall, I went to the other side of the wall and they were in 100′s in a vacant lot with scrub desert brush climbing the wall. Temps were 95ish. They are at least an inch long and very colorful. What is it and is it an issue in my garden?
Signature: Pat Z.

Iron Cross Blister Beetle

Iron Cross Blister Beetle

Hi Pat Z.,
This Iron Cross Blister Beetle in the genus
 Tegrodera is one of the most distinctive looking North American Beetles.  The bright colors of the Iron Cross Blister Beetles are aposomatic, and provide a warning that the beetles are capable of releasing a blistering agent known as cantharadin from their joints, so they should be handled with caution.

Thank you so much, I could not find it anywhere with a picture

Subject: Stunning and Curious Grasshopper
Location: Marloth Park, South Africa
April 18, 2014 3:49 am
Hello bugpeople!
I’m a travel blogger (at www.travelsandtripulations.com) currently in South Africa. I’ve given a shout-out to my readers about your site, because it’s so fabulous. And now I need your help. What in the world kind of grasshopper is this? He is gorgeous. He was studying me as intently as I was studying him.
And would it, by any chance, leave a hard yellow, white and black striped “shell” when it dies? I recently found one on the ground that looks similar to his body. But we’ve also seen a lot of furry yellow black and white striped caterpillars that I’ve been unable to identify (last pic)
I appreciate your help! Thank you!
Cheers,
Signature: Kenda

Elegant Grasshopper

Elegant Grasshopper

Hi Kenda,
Your beautiful grasshopper is appropriately named an Elegant Grasshopper or Rainbow Locust,
Zonocerus elegans , and it is one of the Toxic Milkweed Grasshoppers in the family Pyrgomorphidae.  We do not believe that the exuvia or shed skin of a Grasshopper would be very hard or durable.  Providing a photo would make it easier for us to respond to that question.

Elegant Grasshopper

Elegant Grasshopper

Wow. I’m so pleasantly surprised about how quickly you responded!  Thank you, kindly. My next blog post (going out on or about Monday) will include a nice big shout-out for your work. Thank you!  Tomorrow I’ll go outside and see if I can find that “skin” and take a photo. It looks like it has little feet attached to it.Almost like what a millipede would have but it’s striped – yellow, black, white. It’s quite beautiful and fascinating. There’s a lot of awesome bug activity here. I’ve been having a blast seeing all these critters – even the Orb Spiders that kind of creep me out and fascinate me all at the same time.
Anyway, thank you, Mr. Marlos!
Cheers,
Kenda

Hello Mr. Bugman!
I just published a blog post touting your site and applauding your fabulous bug skills. Here ya go:  http://www.travelsandtripulations.com/2014/04/21/the-wildlife-of-marloth-park-south-africa/
Cheers,
Kenda