Currently viewing the tag: "WTB? Down Under"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: what moth is this
Location: australia
April 17, 2014 3:52 am
my daughter found this and has been trying to find out what it is i’v looked everywhere i have no idea what it is
Signature: :D

Vine Hawkmoth

Vine Hawkmoth

For some reason, we are having difficulty uploading your image.  Your moth is the Vine Hawkmoth or Gabi Moth, Hippotion celerio, which we found on the Butterfly House website where it states:  “The moth is agriculturally important as it is one of several species largely responsible for the pollination of Papaya ( Chamaedorea tepejilote ).”  More information can be found on Sphingidae of the Eastern Palaearctic.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: What are these tiny bugs?
Location: Melbourne Australia
April 9, 2014 1:11 am
Hi There,
I noticed thousands of these tiny little bugs sheltering on an indigenous tree & a neighbouring fence bollard today. i’m guessing the very small red ones are the nymph stage of the slightly larger ( still only a couple of millimeters ) black and white ones. I’m not sure if they would normally be in the tree as we have had an unusually large amount of rain in the last few days and they might have been trying to get to higher and dryer ground. They look like they might be some kind of harlequin beetle to me but if they are they have a long way to get to the size of the ones I sometimes see around.
Hopefully they don’t all survive to adult stage if that is the case as I will have trouble getting through my front door!
Signature: Nick A

Coon Bugs, perhaps

Coon Bugs, perhaps

Hi Nick,
We have been researching this for some time now, and we believe we may have the correct answer for you.  Our first stop with Australian identifications is often the Brisbane Insect website, and we found some images of individual bugs that look somewhat like the winged adults in your incredible aggregation images.  They are identified on the Brisbane Insect website as Coon Bugs or Cottonseed Bugs in the family Oxycarenidae and this information is supplied:  “
Oxycarenus luctuosus or A. [we presume a misprint that should be O.] arctatus, body length 5mm.  The Cottonseed Bugs are small in size. Their back is triangular-patterned in black and white colours. We found them on our hibiscus plants on early spring. The nymphs are black in colour with blood-red abdomens.”  That description matches your images.  We did find the family represented on BugGuide where it states:  “formerly treated under Lygaeidae” and “worldwide, mostly Old World, esp. Palaearctic & Afrotropical(1); in NA, more diverse in the west.”  BugGuide also notes:  “seed-eaters; hosts include plants in a dozen families (there are cotton pests in this family, but not in NA).”  The Atlas of Living Australia has sightings in South Australia including on the border of Victoria, your state, but none close to Melbourne.  Furthermore, there are none in Queensland, the state where the Brisbane website originates.  No reported sightings doesn’t mean that they are not found there, just that no sightings have been reported to the Atlas of Living Australia.  FlickR has a nice set of images of closeups of Coon Bugs, but none show the incredible aggregation that you have documented.  Biodiversity Snapshots indicates they are found “Throughout Australia, including across Victoria.”  Finally, we located an image on FlickR that is identified as Coon Bug, Oxycarenus arctatus, and there is a link to a pdf that states:  “Coon bug, Oxycarenus arctatus, and cottonseed bug, Oxycarenus luctuosus, which are seed and fruit feeders, live by preference on malvaceous plants, such as the weed marshmallow, and hibiscus and cotton. Occasionally they swarm on other cultivated plants, damaging their growth, and on fruit trees, especially stone fruits. They suck the juices of the ripening fruits, leaving dried discoloured patches. If younger fruits are attacked they shrivel and exude gum. These small bugs often swarm around fowl yards, on fences and around the bases of walls of houses and outbuildings. The two species look similar, about 3 mm long and black and white as adults. The nymphs are black with blood-red abdomens.”

Close-up of Coon Bugs

Close-up of Coon Bugs

We are creating a new category for your Coon Bugs in the family Oxycarenidae.

Coon Bugs

Coon Bugs

Hi there again,
Many thanks for your searching efforts and yes, I can confirm that the bugs were indeed coon bugs after checking your links.
The tree they were congregating on ( due to all the rain I think ) is on the edge of a park that has a lot of the mallow weed in it so that makes sense also.
Once again thanks for your work. I am greatly impressed with your site and the work you did for me.
regards,
Nick from Melbourne.

 

 

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Huge Waspe
Location: Adelaide, Australia
April 2, 2014 7:28 pm
I walked outside and felt a pain in my foot and saw this huge thing guarding the bin. Its the biggest I have seen in Adelaide – what is it a potter wasp?
Signature: Andrew Perrott

Spider Wasp

Spider Wasp

Dear Andrew,
We find it amusingly ironic that the “huge thing” which is the “biggest [you] have seen in Adelaide” is also one of the tiniest images we have ever received for identification purposes.  We would love to post a larger version of this image of a Spider Wasp if you have one and can provide it in a subsequent email.

Yes i figured out its a spider wasp through google – we have never seen one like this here

Thanks so much for attaching a higher resolution image.

Spider Wasp

Spider Wasp

i no have a red itchy foot – i am not sure what it did to me, either bit me or stung me

We would suppose you were stung.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Feather Horned Beetle
Location: Phillip Island, Victoria, Australia
March 23, 2014 12:03 am
Hey Bugman,
Came across a Feather Horned Beetle today on a walk around Berry’s Beach and Pyramid Rock on Phillip Island Victoria, Australia. Your site allowed me to determine what it was, and noticed you didn’t have many photos so here’s one for your collection :)
Cheers,
Signature: Lauren

Feather Horned Beetle

Feather Horned Beetle

Dear Lauren,
Your Feather Horned Beetle,
Rhipicera femoralis, is a wonderful addition to our archives.  Thank you so much for sending in a photo of a magnificent species that you had already self-identified.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: wood boring wasp?
Location: brisbane Australia
March 23, 2014 12:40 am
Hey bugman just wondering what this is. Has been boring into wood for years and we’ve never known what it is
Signature: wood boring wasp

Fire-Tailed Resin Bee

Fire-Tailed Resin Bee

This is a Bee, not a Wasp, and we quickly identified it as a Fire-Tailed Resin Bee, Megachile (Callomegachile) mystaceana, (Chalicodoma mystaceana), thanks to the Brisbane Insect Website where it states:  “This is a solitary bee and build nest by resin, gum or mud in enclosed spaces such as space between folds of fabric and old Mud-Dauber Wasp nest. They will nest in drilled wooden blocks too. … This Resin Bee female builds nest in existing cavity.”  If that information is accurate, something else is boring the holes that these resourceful and opportunistic Fire-Tailed Resin Bees are using as nesting sites.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: aussietrev possibly Criocerinae?
Location: Queensland, Australia
March 19, 2014 2:40 pm
Hi guys,
Watering the garden late yesterday and spotted this tiny guy foraging on my Kalamata Olive tree. About 8mm long and only managed this one shot before it dropped off into the grass and was gone. I’ve never seen one before and the only thing I can think of is a Narrow Necked Leaf Beetle but I cannot find any matching photos for ID. What do you think?
Signature: aussietrev

Rove Beetle, we believe

Rove Beetle, we believe

Hi Trevor,
Our first impression is that this looks like it must be a Rove Beetle in the family Staphylinidae, a very underrepresented family on the Brisbane Insect Website.
  According to BugGuide, the members of the family are:  “Thin, active beetles with shortened elytra that do not, at first glance, resemble beetles.”

Correction:  Soft Winged Flower Beetle.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination