From the monthly archives: "April 2006"

can you help?
I’m wondering if you can help identify this beetle-type bug I found nestled on a tree yesterday. Photo is greatly enlarged. The bug is about the size or slightly larger than a common ladybug. Attachment is of photo
K Nickodemus
South Windsor, CT

Hi K,
This is a Leaf Beetle in the genus Calligrapha.

i love your site!
Last Saturday, I was working in the yard, and there was some bug buzzing around overhead, as usual. This is Georgia, there are bugs everywhere. I didn’t pay it too much attention until there was a loud crash – this beetle had charged full-tilt into the aluminum garage door. He had landed on the driveway, sort of stumbling and shaking his head – I might be anthropomorphising a bit, but it really was comical. Of course, I ran to grab the camera… The sun was bright, but just right to see the wings. Thanks to your site, I know this is a scarab!

Hi Petey,
What a beautiful photo of a beautiful male Rainbow Scarab.

strange bug
Hi, I hope this photo is enough for you to help me. I found this bug in some pond water and thought at first it was a small hollow stem but then the stem moved around, looking closely I could see legs coming out of the straw. It stretched out many times but then went back into the stem, like a hermit crab. Can you tell what it is? Thanks,
Sue MacMillan
Adelaide, South Australia.

Hi Sue,
What a wonderful image of a Caddisfly Larva. Caddisflies are in the order Trichoptera. The larvae are aquatic and build homes for protection. Each species has a distinct type of home. Some like yours, use hollow sticks. Others cement sticks or pebbles or shells together.

Orchard Spider?
I do not love bugs but I love your site – in a weird kind of way! I took this photo today of what I think is an Orchard Spider? I couldn’t see it from the back without disturbing it and not knowing which way it would run I decided it best to leave it alone! Is it an Orchard Spider?
Daphne, AL

Hi Carollee,
You are absolutely correct. This is an Orchard Spider, Leucauge venusta. These colorful spiders are in the Long-Jawed Orbweaver family Tetragnathidae.

huge moth in Miami
Dear What’s That Bug,
This huge moth — I think it’s a moth — flew into our kitchen in Miami tonight, and hung out quietly on the ceiling the whole evening. It measured almost 4 inches from wingtip to wingtip. Can you help me identify it?

Hi Tim,
The Ficus Sphinx is one of the Hawk Moths.

Strange household insect
I’ve been trying very hard to find a classification for it on google to no avail…the insect is very small, approximately 2 to 3 centimeters, and resembles a small version of the the toe-biter/giant water bug, except its body is almost completely flat. It has two large front legs that resemble pincers but are used for locomotion. It has a dull, dead-leaflike color and texture, and a very small, hairlike protrusion coming out the back. Any thoughts on what this might be? A few pictures are attached.
Rev. Alexander

Hi Reverand,
You have made us so very happy with your photo. This is a first for our site. This is a Waterscorpion, Nepa apiculata. There are two different genuses of Water Scorpions in North America, and we have received photos of the other, Ranatra, in the past. Waterscorpions are related to Giant Water Bugs known as Toe-Biters. Waterscorpions and Toe-Biters are both aquatic, but both also fly and are attracted to lights. The hairlike protrusion is a type of snorkle for breathing while submerged.