From the monthly archives: "February 2007"

Tiny little worms…
I’m hoping you can help me identify these tiny little worms that have made my children’s bedroom their breeding ground. The pics attached were taken on the patio just off the bedroom. There are hundreds of them outside in the cracks all around the backyard. They have made their way in from the outside and are all around the baseboards. I don’t know what to do about them and can’t identify them. I hope you can help.
Lisa Enriquez

Hi Lisa,
These are not worms, they are Millipedes. They feed on organic material in soil and help break it down. Perhaps you have a new flower bed filled with bags of soil and amendments which has caused this population explosion.

Update: (01/20/2008) Millipede ids.
Here are ids. for the millipedes on the millipede page. Most are quite old; don’t people submit new ones more often than this? 2/19/07 . representatives of the order Julida. Can’t tell family from photo; they are probably introduced as they occur around a home
Rowland Shelley
North Carolina State Museum of Natural Science

Hi! These orb-waiver spiders abound in my house here in Argentina. I would like to know what are they and whether they are dangerous. I can only guess they are some kind of Argiope from some pictures I’ve found in Wikipedia and in your site.

Hi Emiliano,
These are Argiope Orb Weavers, but we cannot tell you what species without additional research. The smaller spider is the pair and he will live in the web with the female and eventually mate. Should you happern to learn the species name, please update us.

butterfly monkey sex
And other insect porn for you! I was so happy to find out I’m not the only one!
Lacey Greene
Bishop, California

Checkerspots Fritillaries

Hi Lacey,
Your photos are all so beautiful. We wish you had provided a bit more information. Your mating Checkerspots in the genus Euphydryas, your mating Fritillaries in the genus Speyeria, and your mating Predacious Diving Beetles, Acilius mediatus, are all wonderful additions to our site.

Bedroom or dining room?
Dear Lisa Anne and Daniel,
"Must You Do That While I’m Eating?" Think of this bug love episode as nature’s own shunga, especially as its main characters are Japanese beetles. Isn’t it bizarre that the bee-mimic hover fly (in addition to being there in the first place) is actually HOLDING this flower’s stamen while it slurps? Taken in Pennsylvania on a July afternoon in 2001.
Jim & Sandy

Hi Jim and Sandy,
Thank you for this humorous image that will get archived to numerous pages: Beetles 11, Flies 3 and Bug Love 4.

Brazilian coast bug
This is the picture of a very common bug in the coast of brazil. It lives in the sand and it’s size ranges from 3 or 4 mm to 3 cm. It’s like some kind of betlee that buries it self in the sand. Thank you very much

Hi Javier,
We have very fond memories of capturing Sand Crabs in the interstitial zone of the beaches near Topanga Canyon, CA in the 70s. Thanks for sending in a truly awesome photo of a Sand Crab.

Hi guys,
Ah, one of my favorite kind of cute little critters, Mole Crabs! This is Emerita brasiliensis, the Brazilian Sand Crab or Mole Crab. It’s one of the species shown at: Here on the East Coast of the US we have lots of really nice Atlantic Mole Crabs, Emerita talpoida. From what I read, there are in total four different species of sand crab on the Atlantic coast of the Americas, and two species on the Pacific coast, including your Emerita analoga (the other Pacific species is more tropical.)

Strange Caterpillar
Found this in the yard – Northern Alabama. Light green body, dark purple head and weird orange eyes!! Cool looking, alien! What is it? Thanks!

Hi Mike,
This very distinctive caterpillar belongs to a butterfly called the Silver Spotted Skipper, Epargyreus clarus.