From the monthly archives: "June 2005"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

some type of clearwing moth from Fairbanks Alaska
I took a picture of this little guy on one of the leaves of my tomato plant. He was less than an inch long.
Erik Anderson
Education Associate
Alaska Department of Fish & Game
Fairbanks Alaska

Hi Erik,
Your Clearwing Moth is one of the Wasp Moths in the Family Sesiidae. They often have dark bodies banded with yellow, red or white. Adults fly diuranlly and visit flowers where the wasp mimicry is a protective coloration. The caterpillars are borers and sometimes do considerable damage in orchards where they damage stems, roots and bark. Sorry we can’t give you an exact species.

Ed Note:
January 17, 2009
Thanks to taftw who identified many of our unidentified Sesiid Wasp Moths today, we now know that this is a Fireweed Borer, Albuna pyramidalis.  The species is well represented on BugGuide

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Red dots on daddy longlegs
Dear Bugman ,
I saw this daddy longlegs in a trumpet vine flower near Richmond , VA. Not all that interesting except he (or she) had several red dots attached to his legs. What are those dots? Babies, eggs or some kind of mite? I find your website very informative since I discovered it a few days ago.

Hi Gregg,
You are correct with the Mite choice. Your photo is superbe.

Update from Barry M. OConnor (05/23/2006)
Mites on harvester (6/28/05). These are parasitic larvae in the family Erythraeidae, genus Leptus. Leptus species can be found parasitizing a wide variety of arthropods in their larval stage. Post- larvae are predatory.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination


Hi Annette,
Your friend has a colony of Cicada Killers, Sphecius speciosus. They do dig in the ground. The female stings and paralyzed a cicada and then lays an egg on it for her young to devour. The nest is underground.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

what is this?
I live in Elkhart Indiana ; I found this in a park in Goshen Indiana & I couldn’t find anything on the net about it, what could this be. Obviously it dead, we couldn’t keep it alive. I like your site, keep it up.
Joe McKalips

Hi Joe,
This is the second Dobsonfly Pupa photo we got in two days. It is dormant and will emerge, probably very soon. The adults are quite frightening looking.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Eyed Hawk Moth/Blinded Moth?
Hi there.
Found your wonderfully informative site while snooping for answers as to what this creature was. Now I have book-marked it, I love your site! This moth came into our home for a visit. There were a few photos on the internet that seemed to indicate that this was an "Eyed Hawk Moth", the similarities were close……………….until I saw your site. The Eyed Hawk Moth that is on your list, does not seem to match what we have, but I noticed another photo of the "Blinded Moth". It seemed to match fairly close. I did note that you referred to it as a Hawk Moth, as well. What do you think? We live about 100 miles north-east of Vancouver, B.C. Two years ago there was a humming-bird-type of creature in our honeysuckle bush, in the evening. Was too dark to see, but I’m fairly certain that this must be the same moth species as then. Anyway, if you have the time to answer, that’s great, but if not, I certainly understand.
Thanks for this site!

Hi Eve,
We think you did a great job of internet research and wholly agree with your assessment that this is a Blinded Sphinx, Paonias excaecatus. Your letter has caused us to do additional research and now we know we have been using an obsolete scientific name for this species. Here is a great site with more information on your moth.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Strangest bug I have ever seen
I really enjoy your website and discovering what others have discovered until I found my own unique insect. I have no clue as to what this may be. I have researched through many sites and have not found an exact match. Can you help??
Rich – Maryland

Hi Rich,
Just this morning we removed a photo of a male Dobsonfly from our homepage since we got a female. They exhibit sexual dimorphism which manifests itself in the jaw structure. The males have pincers like your example, and females have smaller but more robust mandibles. We have an entire Dobsonfly page with many photos.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination