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

Subject: bug identity
Location: Eastern Nebraska
June 10, 2014 1:33 pm
I found these beetles all over my flower garden. In all my years of gardening I have never seen them.
I live in Eastern Nebraska in a suburb next to many farms. Every year I see a new bug I’ve never seen before. He was especially interested in my milkweed which is just beginning to grow.
Signature: Gramma Sally

Milkweed Longhorn

Milkweed Longhorn

Dear Gramma Sally,
If milkweed is new in your garden, that would explain why this Milkweed Longhorn or Red Milkweed Beetle in the genus
Tetraopes is a new bug for you.  According to BugGuide:  “Adults feed on leaves of milkweed (Asclepias); larvae feed externally on roots of host (root feeding is unique among Lamiinae). Each species (or subspecies) is associated with one or a few species of Asclepias (an example of coevolution) (Farrell & Mitter 1998).”

Thank you for your information. I have had the milkweed for several years and have never encountered this bug. I found info on it and it indicated they were present in the eastern part of the US.
They obviously have moved a bit west!!! Sally

According to BugGuide Data, members of the genus are found from coast to coast.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: I know its not a ladybug, but what is it?
Location: Norman, OK
March 6, 2014 3:27 pm
hopefully you can figure this out, I’ve had troubles identifying it. thank you! it is much larger than a ladybug and doesn’t have the same type of head and the antennae don’t seem remotely familiar… spots AND stripes? or would they be more like squares? lol
Signature: Lox

Swamp Milkweed Beetle

Swamp Milkweed Beetle

Dear Lox,
This sure looks like a Swamp Milkweed Beetle,
Labidomera clivicollis.  The black spotting pattern of the Swamp Milkweed Beetle is highly variable, and some individuals have more black than others.  BugGuide notes:  “Part of the orange and black milkweed mimicry complex, which includes Monarch Butterfly, Red Milkweed Beetle, milkweed bugs, and at least one assassin bug.   Larvae and adults of this species cut several side-veins of a milkweed leaf prior to feeding, to reduce the sticky latex that would otherwise be produced at their feeding sites. “

Yay! thank you so much!! I do believe you are correct, I would’ve never figured it out, as I’m not exactly knowledgeable about insects. It does make sense tho, because there where it was heading was a bunch of milkweed all around some rosebushes! now I feel better lol!

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: What’s on The Tongue?
Location: Hawthorne, CA
September 18, 2013 3:38 pm
Hi Daniel,
I saw a bee on the bird bath today and was lucky enough to have my camera with me. Can you tell me what those odd gold colored things are on it’s proboscis? It sat there for quite some time ”cleaning” it with its front feet.
Signature: Thanks, Anna Carreon

Honey Bee with Milkweed Pollinia

Honey Bee with Milkweed Pollinium

Hi Anna,
We believe this might be the pollinium or pollen sac of a milkweed.  We know you grow milkweed.  See Nadia’s Yard and scroll down the milkweed page to see milkweed pollina attached to a honey bee.  We first learned of Milkweed Pollinia from Julian Donahue who commented on a Orchid Bee posting.  Your photos are positively gorgeous.

Honey Bee and Milkweed Pollinium

Honey Bee and Milkweed Pollinium

Hi Daniel,
Thank you for clearing that one up for me, and for the compliment.  I’m enjoying the new camera.  Finally went from a point & shoot to a DSLR.  It makes a huge difference!
Anna

Hi again Anna,
While we believe that the camera is only as good as the photographer, we also believe that photographers should have the best equipment for their needs.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Tetraopes tetraophthalmus? Inter-species love?
Location: Niagara, ON
September 3, 2013 9:15 pm
Hello WTB,
Loving the site as always. I wanted to share this photograph I managed to capture last week near Port Colborne, ON (Niagara region). I found this monarch caterpillar and red milkweed beetle (Tetraopes tetraophthalmus, I think?) sharing an intimate moment on a common milkweed along the Lake Erie shoreline. I hope this was a friendly encounter!
Signature: Alison

Monarch Caterpillar meets Red Milkweed Beetle

Monarch Caterpillar meets Red Milkweed Beetle

Hi Alison,
We love your photo and we can predict that our readership is going to love this photo as well.  We have no idea what is going on and we suspect it is just a chance meeting, but it sure makes for interesting and provocative viewing.  Neither the Monarch Caterpillar nor the Red Milkweed Beetle is a predator, so we don’t believe either is going to make a meal out of the other.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: A few bugs
Location: Chicago, Il
July 24, 2013 2:57 pm
Hi! Can you help me figure out what these bugs are? The first picture is a little black bug I found in my bathroom. He pretended to be dead when I picked him up to put him outside. The second one I found during a walk. I live in Chicago. Both were found this month. Thanks!!!
Signature: Sarah T

Milkweed Longhorn

Milkweed Longhorn

Hi Sarah,
The beetle you found on your walk is a Milkweed Longhorn in the genus
Tetraopes.  Your other beetle is a Spider Beetle and they infest stored foods, so check out the pantry and stored pet food for a possible infestation.  Milkweed Longhorns are strongly associated with milkweed plants which provide food for both the adults and larvae.  According to BugGuide:  “Adults feed on leaves of milkweed (Asclepias); larvae feed externally on roots of host (root feeding is unique among Lamiinae). Each species (or subspecies) is associated with one or a few species of Asclepias (an example of coevolution) (Farrell & Mitter 1998).”  We believe your Milkweed Longhorn is the  Red Milkweed Beetle, Tetraopes tetrophthalmus, based on photos posted to BugGuide.  Because we want to draw more attention to habitat loss and the importance of the biodiversity associated with native milkweed plants, we have selected your submission as the Bug of the Month for August 2013, and the posting will go live to our site on August 1.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Brilliant Colored Beetles
Location: 2 miles west of Olathe Kansas @ 27465 W 143RD ST
July 26, 2013 10:47 am
I found this pair of mating beetles on some milkweed adjacent to my flower bed at my home in Olathe KS. I was unable to identify it in either of my reference books. The attached picture is magnified to show some extra detail. The larger of the two beetles is approximately 8 millimeters in length and about 4 millimeters wide. I did not observe either of the two feeding although they were found on a small species of milkweed. Can you help with identification?
Signature: Mike Lewis

Dogbane Leaf Beetles

Dogbane Leaf Beetles

Hi Mike,
These are Dogbane Leaf Beetles,
Chrysochus auratus, and they are frequently found feeding upon the leaves of Milkweed.  They really do have lovely metallic colors.

Thanks, I have a Kaufman Field Guide and a National Wildlife Federation Field Guide. Both show color closeups of the Dogbane Leaf beetle and even after looking at both references I was unable to come up with that ID on my own. Thanks very much. ><}}}”>

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination