From the monthly archives: "August 2006"

Male Common Whitetail… though from the shot, I’m more inclined to say "Bluetail"
I found the ID for this one already.. it’s a male Common Whitetail. I know you already have this fella on your website, but I caught a surprisingly sharp shot of one today and thought I might send it in. He was buzzing frantically around my screened-in porch. After this shot, I caught him and took him out. He was very appreciative.
Kelli Savage, Richmond VA.

Hi Kelli,
Your photo of Plathemis lydia, a Common Whitetail male is quite dramatic.

Hows this for an Aussie slug
We breed them big here in Queensland. This slug was spotted climbing a tree in our garden by us on the way home from our favorite Chinese / Vietnamese restaurant. There had been a good bit of rain (for a change) and this remarkable creature was climbing into the treetops to start munching. I nearly got out the Dettol (a disinfectant spray we use to dispatch the cane toad, an alien pest imported to get rid of the cane toad beetle that has since become an environmental disaster). On closer inspection we were impressed with the bugger and did a bit of Googling (as you do) and found your web site. So here are the images of the Red Triangle Slug from our garden.
Gillian & Len
Queensland, (Australia)

Hi Gillian and Len,
Thanks for your awesome image. The first time we saw an image of mating Red Triangle Slugs, we thought someone had painted them.

What is this bug?
My wife and I grow tomatoe plants every summer. Today we were looking for the last few remaining crop when she spotted this. We live in the Northeastern US (New York State, 45min north of Manhatten). Do you know what this is? It looks like a caterpillar.. Thanks,
Scott Shapiro

Hi Scott,
This is one of two species of Sphinx Moth in the genus Manduca that feed on tomato leaves and other related plants. They are commonly called Tomato Hornworms or Tomato Bugs. It has been parasitized by Brachonid Wasps and is covered with wasp pupa. We have never seen a caterpillar parasitized to this extent. Thanks for your image.

Cicada Killer
Hello, I happened to capture a photo of a cicada killer wasp that you may be interested in. I was sitting at an outdoor event that I photograph when motion in my peripheral vision attracted my attention. I looked up to see this GIANT wasp killing a cicada. In all the time I have been outdoors I’ve never seen anything like this before. Needless to say I grabbed my gear and went to work trying to capture it. You can see the image. Thanks,

Hi Ron,
We have been getting 100s of letters and photos of Cicada Killers this summer. Your Food Chain photo is one of the best.

Io Moth
Hi Bugman,
We were making fodder shocks with the corn stalks and our son yells, “OUCH!” His father calls him a wimp and tells him to stop belling aching. Moments later, Pops yells, OUCH what the *?@!*# something just stung me!! A closer look revealled, the Io Moth Catipillar (We identified by your website). Stephen tells the kids to back away, Don’t Touch it! I was working in the garden with the guys and had to check out this vicious catipillar that was dropping the guys like flies. I have to admit what a wild little creature and grabbed the camera. I would have taken some pictures of the bite marks and attached- had the camera battery not died right after this shot. Enjoy,
Stephen, Jen, Jared, and Zach.

Hi All,
What a delightful story of a family bonding chore being interrupted by a little stinging Io Moth Caterpillar.