From the monthly archives: "September 2005"

Wheel bug found
Hi bugman,
Just wanted to let you know that I found this cool little bug in the flowers around my pond. Didn’t know what it was but came on your site and found it within a matter of minutes. Great site. I found this in Northeast PA.
Catasauqua, PA

Hi E K,
It always makes us so happy when people use the site as a research tool instead of just firing off a letter with an out of focus photo before even looking at any of the possibilities we have to offer. your image is great and we are happy to have it.

Scorpion Pictures
we found this scorpion yesterday here at work. We get alot of stuff from Asia, but not tropical regions. We are in Chicago Illinois, so I know that this would die here right? Do you know what this one is or where it would come from? Is he venemous? Anything would be nice, cuz right now we have him in a tupperware container with a hole in the top not knowing what to do with him…did someone plant him as a joke, or is he really from Asia? He is about 3 – 4 inches long….totally black from what I can see….hope you can determine something from this…

Hi Heidi,
This is most assuredly not a Chicago native. We believe this to be an African Black Scorpion in the genus Pandinus. We found this information on a scorpion collector’s website: “African Emperor Scorpion (Pandinus imperator) WC adults 4″, $15 each These beautiful jet black scorpions are also, pound for pound one of the largest. Gentile in nature for the most part making them ideal pet specimans that rarely sting, and posseses mild venom. These have been a staple scorpion hobby species for many years, and a must for beginners looking for a great start in keeping scorpions. Very cool scorpion! ” In answer to your question about it being planted as a joke: WE THINK SO.

What type of dragonfly (or damselfly) is this?
Dear Bugman,
This type of a dragonfly (or red damselfly?) has landed on me twice this month in our yard. What type is it? We live in Southern New Hampshire, and the picture was taken today, September 30th. Thanks so much,

Hi Maria,
We believe this is an Autumn Meadowhawk, Sympetrum vicinum, a male. This Skimmer is small and often found in late summer. It is usually the last species found in a given area.

Hi –
What a great site, funny and very informative! I think this is a clearwing moth – I took the photo over Labor Day weekend at about 10,000 feet in the Eastern Sierra. What is it? Thanks,

Hi Allison,
We are so thrilled you appreciate our humor. We just posted a letter from an irate reader who called us rude. This is definitely one of the Wasp Mimicing Clearwing Moths in the Family Sesiidae, but the species is unknown to us.

January 19, 2009
We just approved a comment that identified this as a Fireweed Borer, Albuna pyramidalis.

Photogenic Mantis!
Hi gang! I just wanted to share these pictures with you of this great little Praying Mantis that popped by for a visit. He was about as friendly as could be and loved to play with my two boys for about 30 minutes. He would fly from one to the other like he was purposely sharing his time with each of them, it was great. I was able to snap a few photos of him and he just seemed to know what I was doing. As you can see in the photos, he looked right at me as if he was posing. If he had teeth, I’m sure I would have seen a smile! I hope you will post these on you web site for others to enjoy. Thanks a bunch.
Mike from So. Cal Orange County

Hi Mike,
We hope you don’t mind that we took your awesome photo and cropped it to a tight headshot.

What’s this fly?
I have sent you a couple of pics a while back and I believe I have found the names of two of the three unknown; a yellow jacket and a bald face hornet. I have not found the name of this little fly yet. I am sending three pictures of this little creature that let me observe it while it was collecting pollen from Aster flowers. It let me get real close; my macro gear needs to be 8-9 inches from the subject for a picture like the face shot. I landed on your site while I was searching for names of insects I observed; it’s now in my favorites and I visit it on a daily basis to see the new posts. I hope you can identify this little fly.
Guy Côté
Montréal, Qc.

Hi Guy,
Sorry to have not answered your first letter. On busy days we get as many as 50 letters and can only answer about four or five. We choose at random. This is a Large Bee Fly in the genus Bombylius. Adults drink nectar and larva is a parasite in the nest of solitary bees.