From the monthly archives: "October 2006"

Hi, I’m in Tampa, Florida. I encountered this beetle yesterday while inspecting dead pine trees. He was a friendly bug, about 1.5 inches long and 1⁄2 inch wide. He allowed me to stroke his back and take his picture (he was probably scared to death I would eat him) LOL. Could you identify him for me so I can research him a bit more. I’ve tried searching on the internet for gray and black beetles of Florida, but was unsuccessful.
Lori Moreda, Natural Resources Code Investigator
Tampa, FL

Hi Lori,
What a well camouflaged Buprestid or Metallic Wood Borer Beetle you have there and a wonderful image for Halloween. It is in the genus Chalcophora and is most likely the Sculptured Pine Borer, Chalcophora virginiensis, which can be found on BugGuide.

what is this bug?
Recently, my family and I went for a walk and saw this creepy crawly cross our path (see attachment). It was approx. the size of a mouse and moved at about the same speed. I have tried to figure out what it could be but can’t seem to make any progress. It appears to be a very large type of ant but it’s hind legs look like a spider’s. Also, it was about 3" long. Please advise. Please accept my apologies for the quality of the photo as I took it with my cell phone. I sharpened the image a bit in photoshop. Thank you,
Marv Peters

Hi Marv,
Our homepage is never without a photo of a Potato Bug or Jerusalem Cricket, so we can’t understand how you missed it.

Painted Arachnis
Hi, guys!
WONDERFUL website! Thanks to your collection, I was able to ID this incredible moth that we found while helping a friend pack their belongings for a move; it toppled out of one of the bags and we honestly thought it was a decorative fake butterfly! It wasn’t until I could feel the thing starting to move around on my finger that I realized it wasn’t a fake!! I got Floyd to pose with it (then finally set it on their Bird of Paradise), and am sharing the pics with you to use in your collection; enjoy!
San Diego, CA

Hi MB,
Thanks for sending in your photo. The Painted Arachnis, one of the Tiger Moths with Wooly Bear Caterpillars, are currently being attracted to our porch lights at the Mt Washington office in Los Angeles where they are laying eggs on the side of the structure.

Orgy in the Cow-Peas
My boyfriend and I discovered scads of these bugs (after searching your website I think I’ve identified them as some kind of leaf-footed bug) all over our cow-peas a few weeks ago. They stayed there for at least several days, seemingly engaged in a giant orgy. They appear to have made dark spots all over our cow-pea pods. Is it possible that they layed eggs in the pods or the peas themselves? Best,
San Diego CA

Hi Allison,
These are mating Leaf Footed Bugs in the genus Leptoglossus, but they don’t seem to exactly match the species depicted on BugGuide. We suspect the black marks on the cow-pea pods are the result of the insects feeding. They have piercing and sucking mouthparts, and inject enzymes into the seeds and fruits of the plants they feed upon.

Can you tell me what this one is?
I enjoy taking nature pictures and while I was in my winter oat field this weekend I saw this very golden beetle fly into the oats.

Hi Lindsey,
This is a Cerambycide Borer Beetle we did not recognize. We searched BugGuide and found a match with the genus Tragidion, possibly Tragidion armatum brevipenne. Other than an image match, we can’t find much information on the species. The coloration is perfect for Halloween.

found in FL
We are collecting bugs for a unit on insects. This was on the front porch in the evenings in August in Palm Bay, Fl. The box is 1 1/2" square and the wing span is 2". The wings looked black until I saw it in the sun today and the green irridescence was visible. So beautiful! Please help. The closest I can come to it is an insect in Africa!! There is no rush as the unit will be taught in the New Year. We are collecting now because there aren’t very many here in the winter months. Thanks,
Patricia Fife

Hi Patricia,
We have many letters with information on the Polka-Dot Wasp Moth on our moth pages. This is the first image we have seen where the wings look green. They generally look blue-black.