Currently viewing the tag: "food chain"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

bumblebee killing honeybee? queen mating with drone?
I can see that this is obviously a bumblebee (don’t know which species); but I’m surprised to see it firmly attached to what appears to be a honeybee (or a drone?). I’ve sent two different views. Do you have any idea what’s going on here? Thanks for any time you can spare to help me out.
Chuluota, FL (Central Fl)

Hi Diane,
This is not a Bumblebee. It is a Robber Fly known as a Southern Bee Killer, Mallophora orcina. According to BugGuide it is a: “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. “

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

assassin but
I live in Cleveland Georgia. My apple tree is being eaten by Japanese Beetles. I read quite a bit about them on the web and mostly learned there are no nature enemies of them. BUT a couple of days ago when I was picking them off my tree, I ran across this threesome. Only 2 of the bugs are clear – the dead/dying J/B and the bug on the bug eating the J/B. I’ve been told it is an assassin bug and after searching the web, I’m figuring it is the blood sucking conenose. Is it? Since this pic, I have found another one in a flowering bush that also is infested with J/B’s. They have not acted aggressive, even when I have almost touched them. Because they like the beetles, I don’t want to run them off!!! Thanks,

Hi Beth,
We are guessing that you meant Assassin Bug and not “Assassin But” in your subject line. This is not a Blood Sucking Conenose. It is a Bee Assassin, Apiomerus crassipes and BugGuide has a detailed photo for comparison. We doubt that there are enough predators out there to significantly curb the Japanese Beetle emergence each year, but it is nice to see the Assassin Bugs are trying.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

little spider hunting wasp in action
hi there.
after perusing some of the great photos on here i thought i’d dig out one of my fav photos; some ‘action’ shots of a 10mm long spider- hunting wasp dragging its paralysed victim back to its lair she seemed very determined and sure of her destination through what would be a mountain range of stones and leaves. i snapped this in the UK last summer. not after an ID (well ok if you want a challenge) just thought i’d share. cheers,
andy (kenilworth, england).
fantastic website!!!!

Hi Andy,
We might eventually identify your Spider Wasp, but for now, we will post it with just the general category.

I thought I might try to look this one up, but I was amazed to find out that even in just the UK alone there are 48 species in the family Pompilidae, spider-hunting wasps!

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

spider eating a dragon fly.
I have no idea what this is….I think it could be a fishing spider, There was no web present in the area (a shed in Milo Maine). It caught the dragon fly without leaving the spot I took the picture.
Robert A. Prescott

Hi Robert,
Your photo does not provide an angle for easy identification, but it sure is a dramatic image. We believe, based on size and description, that this is a Fishing Spider that has made fast food of a Dragonfly.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Cicada Killer with prey
I found this site trying to figure out what this was. I believe it is a Cicada Killer with its prey.

Hi Neal,
Thanks for sending us your dramatic example of the insect Food Chain. The Cicada Killer is a much maligned insect. We get numerous reports that they are aggressive insects, though reports of stinging are few and far between. The female Cicada Killer digs a burrow that she provisions with Cicadas she has paralyzed with her sting. The Cicadas provide food for the larvae. She lays an egg on each Cicada and positions it in its own underground chamber. These are solitary wasps, though there is occasionally a nesting colony.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

crab spider
Where was this site when I found some crazy huge fuzzy spider!? I see the spider in my photo has been identified a couple of times already but I just wanted to share this photo (I’m just proud of it). I am actually terrified of spiders but still find them quite interesting. I like honey bees and I am wondering about the fate of the honey bee in the photo. They got into quite the scuffle and eventually the honey bee flew off – I am just wondering if he’d be alright after a a fight with one of these guys.

Hi Rebecca,
What’s That Bug? has been accepting correspondance from our curious readership online for over five years, and prior to that, for two years in print, though the modest photocopied American Homebody zine probably never crossed your path. Your Crab Spider is stalking a Bumble Bee, not a Honey Bee. Unless the spider sank its fangs into the bee, the Bumble Bee probably lived to pollinate numerous flowers after the near fatal encounter. Sadly, Crab Spiders do not know the difference between beneficial and harmful insects. Since Crab Spiders spend so much time on flowers, a large portion of their prey consists of beneficial pollinators.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination