From the yearly archives: "2004"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

whats my bug
I have this bug in my house and I see the out side as well. They are usually under rocks and plant pots or in the hidden places like under a couch or chair. They have 6 legs on either side, 2 little hair-like spikes on it’s hind end, and anouther 2 anntenas on it’s head. They are always a grayish colour. These two pictures are the largist I have ever seen (aprox.1cm).

You have a terrestrial isopod commonly called a Pillbug, Sowbug or Rollie-Pollie. They are relatively benign, though they can get very numerous.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

What is this?
Can you please help me identify this bug. They are found on the walls in my home. They crawl very fast and are very tiny. I took a picture next to a dime.
Thanks for any help
Jon Lindberg

Hi Jon,
You have a Dermestid Beetle larva which include household pests like carpet beetles and larder beetles.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

I have these huge cricket like bugs in my bathroom and in my linen closet. They leave there nasty little dropping all over my clean sheets. I just walked into my bathroom and there was a HUGE one hanging out on my shower curtain. What the heck are these creatures??

You have a Camel Cricket or Cave Cricket from the Family Gryllacrididae. They are often found in basements and other damp places.

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WTB what can you tell us about this bug.
We live in Long Beach California and it’s the second time that we have encounter this huge bug in exactly the same place in front of house. The first one just died on it’s on and the second one just seems to turn from being on its front to back.
Can you please tell us what it is.
Thank you for your help.
Eyal & Hadas

Dear Eyal and Hadas,
You have a Potato Bug or Jerusalem Cricket. They live underground and are sometimes driven to the surface after a heavy rain.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

mystery cocoons
Dear Bugman,
I think I had better tell this one backwards: While we were out of town last mid-September, our friends babysat our 2 cocoons for us here in Atlanta, Georgia, and to everyone’s amazement, hatched an Ichneumon. They took a picture for us, which I’m afraid I don’t have. However, we checked our bug book, as well as your fabulous site, and are quite sure that’s what it was. Only one of the two cocoons hatched. We had thought (very wrongly) that the caterpillars were monarchs. They were striped, but later we realized that the stripe colors were slightly wrong. They were happily eating parsley (beginning where we found them at a plant nursery), which should have been our first clue that these weren’t really monarch caterpillars. Well, they ate and ate until at last they both curled upside down one evening. The next morning, we had two very strange looking cocoons, as you can see in the pictures I’ve attached. They were not hanging down, but propped right-side up, and leaning back against a thread of silk, with it’s ends attached to the twig like… struts? I think you can make it out in at least one picture (13cocoonsB.jpg). The cocoon that hatched has a hole in it. I am not up for cutting open the second one, but could perhaps be convinced if necessary. So, what in the heck were these things (before they were devoured by the Ichneumon)? I wasn’t able to match the caterpillars to anything in my bug book, or on your site. It didn’t occur to me to photograph them until it was too late. I hope the cocoon photos are enough of a clue! Thanks … we love your site!
in Atlanta, GA

Hi Penina,
First, your cocoons are not cocoons, which is the word that describes the silken coating spun by most moth caterpillars to cover the pupa. Your butterfly pupa is also called a crysalis. The silken thread and the upward orientation is a dead giveaway that it is one of the genus Papilio, the Swallowtails. The food plant, parsley as well as the striped color would tend to identify the Black Swallowtail, Papilio asterius, as the most likely suspect.

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Is this a centipede larva?
My 7 year old bug lover son, found 2 of these centipede-like creatures the other day. We have looked online and can’t find it anywhere. Can you help us? We live in Santa Cruz County, CA if that helps locate the species. It is the bug in the middle.

Hi Kendra,
Your specimens look more like some species of millipede, but not a species we are able to identify.

Update: (01/20/2008) Millipede IDs
11/12/04 . Sta. Cruz Co., Calif. Xystocheir dissecta taibona Chamberlin (Polydesmida: Xystodesmidae)
Rowland Shelley
North Carolina State Museum of Natural Science

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination