Weird bug looks like a dobsonfly and yellow jacket mixed
Hi,
My wife and I found this bug in our house on the curtains. I have never seen one before so there’s no worries or anything, I was just curious and wanted to find out what it was. I looked all over the internet and can’t find it, but after coming across your site, I figured maybe you could help? We live in the Willamette Valley in Oregon. I saw pictures of dobsonfly’s and it looks similar to that but it has a longer neck and a body like a yellow jacket with a long tail (maybe a stinger???). I look forward to hearing from you!
P.S. Thanks for the great website, I find it very fascinating! 🙂
Andy

Dear Andy,
You have taken a photograph of a Common Snakefly, Agulla species. They can be recognized by their elongated prothorax and projecting head. Adults feed on small soft-bodies insects including young scale insects, aphids and mites, and are beneficial to farmers and gardeners. They are members of the order of Nerve-Winged Insects, Neuroptera that also include Dobsonflies.

Hello,
I got busy and never had a chance to reply and thank you. Thank you for identifying the insect and replying so quickly! I love your site and hope you continue to run it for years to come. You provide a very unique and excellent service. Thanks again.
Andy

4 Responses to Snakefly

  1. Nick says:

    My 10yr old son was bitten by one today 4/5 times on his big toe while Sitting in the yard. We live in Portland Or.

    He first said ouch I just got stung very loudly and just froze stiff (he has never been stung before). While I was walking towards his to see, he yelled out again and started crying. He yelled ouch a couple more times and when I finally got to him, the snake fly was still on his toe and I could see it latched on to him. I quickly brushed it off his toes and googled what the heck it was. It was 100% a snake fly…that’s what got me here.

  2. Nigel says:

    The published sources say that they’ve been here for 50 million years and that they’re totally harmless and, in fact, a gift from god to have around.
    Everyone I know who’s seen one has been bit, stung or cut by these things.
    (The long, thin cut was very strange indeed.)
    I have been bitten by them for sure.
    (Just now, in fact.)
    Furthermore, no one I know saw them before 2000 and some didn’t see them until more recent than that and many of these people spend their whole lives outside and identify species for fun.
    It seems that there is more to learn about these things, good news for anyone who enjoys studying insects.

  3. Nigel says:

    I wonder if they’re getting more aggressive or more common or if a specific variety of them that is aggressive has been spreading.

  4. Julie Barnhart says:

    While camping in Bend, Oregon a snake fly bit me 3 times on my back. It felt like a bite/sting that was very painful. It has been over 2 months since I was “attacked” but my back still feels itchy and tender where I was stung. I recently went to an urgent care and was given a steroid cream to apply to the area for 2 weeks. The doctor saw no marks on my back. After 2 weeks of steroid treatment the spot still itches and is tender and slightly numb to the touch. Is anyone else feeling these side effects from their bites?

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