Cylindrical hardwood borers mating
Despite the crappy picture quality, my sister the biology teacher was able to identify these bugs for me. I watched them for much longer than I’m willing to admit. The mating ritual was pretty funny. Two or three of these guys were running back and forth, back and forth along an almost vertical segment of a mostly-dead tree. Each time one got to the end of the vertical segment, it would turn around and dart in the other direction. About every twentieth pass, two bugs would run into each other and mate. They’d finish (or he’d get tired of holding her down) and take off in opposite directions. Back and forth, back and forth…Then they’d run into each other again and the fun would resume. This went on long enough for me to go back to the house and fetch the camera. Unfortunately, my camera isn’t good enough to take top-notch close-up pictures.
What your photos lack in technical quality, you more than make up for with your colorful account of the mating ritual of the Cylindrical Hardwood Borer, Neoclytus acuminatus.