From the monthly archives: "June 2007"

Hummingbird Moth?
This Moth drinks nectar from the same Honeysuckle flowers that the Ruby Throated Hummingbirds in our yard do. This is definitely not the “Clearwing” variety of the Hummingbird Moth, which I read about before. I took this decent picture of this type of regular wing moth hovering in front of a Honeysuckle flower a couple of years ago and am sending it along for identification. We see this type of moth every summer in Western Rhode Island, though not as often as the “Clearwing” variety. We have not seen it yet this season as I think it’s still too early in the season.
Thanks, Chris

Hi Chris,
This is an Azalea Sphinx, Darapsa choerilus. Though Bill Oehlke, who runs a most amazing Sphingidae site, does not list this moth in Rhode Island, it is found in surrounding states. You should contact him so he can list your siting for the state as this might represent the first official siting in Rhode Island.

Unidentified Critter
Dear Sirs:
Any idea about this little critter. They are tearing up my Russian Sage, Cat Mint and other flowering plants. Helping to identify the bug would obviously help in seeking a solution, but to date I have been unsuccessful in placing a name on the critter. Thanks.

Hi Jonathan,
You never provided us with a location, and since we didn’t know if you were in North Carolina, England or Singapore, we could not take the time to research your query. Luckily for you, Helen wrote in the next day and let us know that her Four Lined Plant Bugs, Poecilocapsus lineatus, were eating the sage in her Virginia garden. Armed with the knowledge that this insect was North American, we quickly identified it.

Moth at El Morro National Monument
Hi! The staff here at El Morro National Monument (In Northwestern New Mexico) found this moth (alas, dead) on the trail. We want to use the moth to educate people about the native insects but we can’t seem to identify it! I know your site says you are busy but could you please please please help us out? We have a display about butterflies and would love to add this moth but we need to know what it is so we can tell our visitors about it!
Thanks! Megan Allinger

Hi Megan,
This is a Columbia Silk Moth, Hyalophora columbia. It is one of the Giant Silk Moths and it has a very short adult life span. The mature, mate and die without eating.

Hi. If you’re still answering emails, I would love to know if you know what this bug is. … The larger one is from our yard. We live in Tampa, FL. This thing (or several of them) have been buzzing around for a while. I’ve never seen anything like it. I’d really like to know if it stings since I have 2 young boys. Thanks a lot

This is a Polka-Dot Wasp Moth and it is harmless. The Caterpillar is the Oleander Caterpillar and we just posted a photo of it yesterday.

Tiny green fly
I took this picture of a very tiny fly yesterday, and was wondering if you knew what the species was. He measured less than a centimeter head to tail. (Feel free to post the photo to the site, if you’d like.) Thanks!

Hi Kerry,
This is a Long Legged Fly in the family Dolichopodidae. We believe it is in the genus Condylostylus. Long Legged Flies prey on small insects.

please read this for your own sake!!! on your centipedes page on the bottom of the page there is a link to a porn site that you should get rid of before someone else (little kids, families, schools, ect) see it. the link is hamburgerla and it is discusting sincierly,

Dear RP,
Thank you so much for bringing this to our attention. We were once affiliated with, since our friend was reviewing eateries in LA that served burgers. He obviously let the license expire and his site was purchased by an adult content site. We are mortified that we did not know of this sooner. Thankfully, the link was only on our two centipede pages and the millipede page. The problem is now corrected.