Currently viewing the tag: "bug of the month"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: BC Beetle
Location: BC
April 30, 2016 4:12 pm
This Beetle has been hanging around our backyard the last three days. We live in southwestern, British Columbia, Canada. Cannot find a match anywhere.
Signature: Jason Peckham

Elderberry Longhorn: Desmocerus aureipennis cribripennis

Elderberry Longhorn: Desmocerus aureipennis cribripennis

Dear Jason,
This gorgeous Longhorned Borer Beetle is a subspecies of an Elderberry Longhorn that does not have a common name,
Desmocerus aureipennis cribripennis.  A close relative in the same genus is more typically called an Elderberry Longhorn, but the same common name also applies to the entire genus.  The Elderberry Longhorns are not common and they are generally not found far from their host plant, Elderberry, according to Eric Eaton.  Because of your submission’s timely arrival at the beginning of the month, and because of your excellent image, we are designating your Elderberry Longhorn as the Bug of the Month for May 2016.  The common name Golden Winged Elder Borer is used on Encyclopedia of Life.

Daniel;
Well that just made my day!
Thank-you so much for you time to enlighten me and everyone in my Facebook and Instagram feeds who were drawing blanks.
I have four little girls and I love that exposing them to and coaching an appreciation for the diversity of life, they come running into the house yelling like someone is on fire when they find a new insect.
Thanks again,
Jason Peckham
Cheers,
Jason

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Unusual moth
Location: Central north carolina
March 30, 2016 9:19 pm
Hi! Last night this guy flew into my house to hang around on the wall near a lamp. I hadn’t seen this kind of bug before so I isolated it under a glass before letting it back outside. It would be nice to know what species it is and if it’s the male or female of said species. I’m only guessing moth by the antennae. Here is what I’ve observed: with wings closed its about 1.5-2 inches long, 6 legs, narrow when wings are closed wings start fairly far away from the eye region, Fuzzy moth like antennae, 2 sets of wings, body is very slender, smooth, and long when wings are open. Almost like how a dragon fly is situated. Either vey dark brown or black in color all over. Wings have a same color raised textured on them. Sorry the pictures aren’t the best. And I am unsure of the wing span.
Signature: Thanks! Lauren

Spring Fishfly

Spring Fishfly

Dear Lauren,
This is a male Spring Fishfly,
Chauliodes rastricornis, and here is what BugGuide has to say:  “Compare C. pectinicornis. Head and pronotum have dark markings on light brown background, as opposed to yellowish markings on dark brown background of C. pectinicornis. Antennae of female serrate, of male, pectinate. So, apparently, a Chauliodes with serrate antennae should be a female C. rastricornis. Note earlier flight (spring) of rastricornis in most of east. C. pectinicornis typically flies in summer.”

Male Spring Fishfly

Male Spring Fishfly

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Ed. Note:  April 11, 2016
Bed Bug identification queries have increased greatly in the past five years, and though most of those have turned out to be Carpet Beetles or other Household Pests, actual Bed Bug sightings have also greatly increased, prompting us to add Bed Bugs to our Top 10 tag.

Subject: Tick?
Location: Chicago, IL USA
February 29, 2016 1:32 pm
I found this bug on my backpack today. Im not really sure what it is, but it sort of looks like a tick. I do not live in a heavily wooded area (I live in Chicago). This bug was very little and very flat. Im hoping you can tell me what it is.
Signature: Julia

Bed Bug

Bed Bug

Dear Julia,
The bad news is that this is a blood-sucking Bed Bug and if you found it in your home, you may have more.  Look for bites that occur while sleeping.  The good news is that we are featuring your submission as the Bug of the Month for March 2016.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Leap Day Posting UpdateJust as we decided to to change the status of this posting, we realized another possibility.  Might Rhinoceros Beetles hibernate if they don’t mate or if they emerge late in the season?   

Subject: large “horned” beetle
Location: Shenandoah Valley, Virginia
February 28, 2016 8:23 am
Hi, I just found these beetles in the rotted out center of an old (100+ yrs.) dead red oak tree stump in New Market, Virginia. I was mixing dirt into the compost-like material when I found them. Their bodies are appx. 2 1/2 inches long. At first I thought I was looking at a bug with vertical pinchers but then I realized that only the bottom one moved. They have two smaller “horns” on either side of the large one. I think their eyes are down near where the lower pincher meets the body. Can you tell me anything about these beetles?
Signature: Steve N.

Male Eastern Hercules Beetles

Male Eastern Hercules Beetles

Dear Steve,
What a marvelous discovery you have made.  These are male Eastern Hercules Beetles,
Dynastes tityus, the heaviest species of beetle found in North America.  Immature grubs are found in rotting wood.  Adults normally appear in summer, with most sightings occurring in July.  We are guessing that unusual weather is causing emergence schedules of insects to change.  We suspect these two guys completed metamorphosis and perhaps they are waiting for ideal conditions to emerge from the rotting stump to mate and reproduce.

Male Eastern Hercules Beetle

Male Eastern Hercules Beetle

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Snowy recluse?
Location: Stratford, Connecticut
January 30, 2016 7:48 pm
I snapped this picture while dog walking last week. I was surprised to see a spider crawling across the snow. Is it a brown recluse?
Signature: Karen

Hacklemesh Weaver in the Snow

Hacklemesh Weaver in the Snow

Dear Karen,
We are going to go out on a limb and say that this Spider walking on the snow is an unusual sighting.  The pronounced pedipalps indicate your spider is a male and the large mandibles made our identification relatively easy.  The Spiders of Connecticut site has a good image of a male Hacklemesh Weaver,
Amaurobius feros, that looks like a very close match to your spider.  The site states:  “Native to Europe, it has become established in southeastern Canada and the eastern U.S., though is not limited to those regions. This robust spider is common in and around homes, but also lives under rocks, logs, in leaf litter, and other dark, humid places. Adult males are notorious for wandering in the spring.”  BugGuide also has a good matching image and the information page on BugGuide provides the common name Black Lace Weaver and states:  “A synanthropic species; found associated with humans and man-made structures.”  Spiders.Us provides this life cycle information:  “For this nocturnal spider, mating seems to take place mostly in the spring, but sometimes also in the fall. However, because this species seems to have a lifespan of 2 years or more, it is possible to find sexually mature specimens year-round, so mating may take place at any time really. Egg laying seems to happen mainly in the early summer. The female deposits eggs into a lens-shaped, silken sac about 7-15mm in diameter. Each sac can have anywhere from 60-180 individual eggs inside and it takes about 3-4 weeks before the spiderlings emerge. She stands guard over them that entire time.  Interestingly, this species is matriphagous, which means the mother sacrifices herself as food for her spiderlings. This happens a day or two after their first molt, which is roughly one week from their emergence from the egg sac. This species is considered ‘subsocial’ because, after cannibalizing their mother, the spiderlings remain together and feed communally for about a month. They overwinter in their immature stage, and most overwinter once again in their adult form.”  Our favorite bit of trivia also comes from Spiders.Us:  “Cloudsley-Thompson (1955) mentions that, in England, Amaurobius ferox is sometimes called the ‘Old Churchman’ because it can be seen scurrying around on the walls and pews of old churches before rain storms.” 

Awesome Daniel!  Thanks for the ID and the info about him.  I’ve been a fan of the site for many years and this is my first “bug of the month”, very cool!  Happy (early) spring!
Karen in CT

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: What is this??
Location: Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
December 12, 2015 2:05 pm
I dug up this bug in the dirt and I have no clue what it is and I have never seen it before. What is this?
Signature: Daniel

Imperial Moth Pupa

Imperial Moth Pupa

Dear Daniel,
This is a moth pupa, and we believe it is an Imperial Moth Pupa.  Many species of moths pass the winter as pupae, and many of those pupate underground.  The Imperial Moth Caterpillar dug beneath the surface of the soil to metamorphose, and in the spring the adult Imperial Moth will emerge.  Now that you have dug this individual up, you have to decide what to do to have it survive.  You can place it in a container with some loose dirt and keep it in a sheltered location that is unheated, like a screened porch or garage.  Hopefully your individual will survive the winter.  As we are preparing for a holiday trip, we are postdating submissions to go live while we are away, and we are tagging your submission as the Bug of the Month for January 2016 because we feel this is an appropriate species to represent the cold months of winter.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination