From the monthly archives: "July 2007"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Is this a Great Golden Digger?
Hello Bugman,
We’ve just discovered several of these burrowing around the driveway in Long Island, New York in the sandy ground. Is this a Great Golden Digger? I’m afraid we are not very “Pro Bug” with stinging insects and would like to get rid of them rather than risk seeing what kind of reaction a sting would have on our kids who have a range of allergies already. Can you tell me: 1) Are they aggressive? 2) Will any non-chemical methods work to get rid of them? (like sugar water in a wasp trap?) 3) Is each hole we are seeing home to an individual wasp or do they dig several holes each? There atleast 30 holes in the immediate area…. Thank You,
Ps-Although a lot of the pics make the kids scream, your site is very educational without being boring-well done!

Hi Christy,
You are correct. This is a Great Golden Digger Wasp and it is not aggressive. We do not have any advice regarding eliminating them. Each tunnel belongs to a single wasp, though one wasp may dig multiple tunnels.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Spider unknown
This is the second of these I found in South Texas. The first one was not as big or decorative as the one attached. From top to bottom, I estimate it to be total length at 2.5 inches, and body length is about .5 inches and found both of them stretched from the eve of the house across to a window. I assume from reading on your web site, that this is a orb weaver. Any info, would be greatly appreciated. Picture was using the macro feature on my minolta 5 MPixal camera. Thanks,
Corpus Christi, Tx

Hi Ken,
this is a gorgeous specimen of Silver Argiope, Argiope argentata, one of the Orb Weaving Spiders. They are harmless.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Mud Dauber????
Hi there Bugman!
I came across this pretty, 2.5 – 3.0 cm long shiny gunmetal blue wasp with white banding on his legs while hiking in the Oregon Mt Hood Wilderness. I’m guessing he’s a Mud Dauber . . . . ???? But what type?

Hi Peter,
This is a Wood Wasp in the genus Urocerus. It matches an unidentified mounted specimen on BugGuide that might be Urocerus albicornis.

Update: Urocerus albicornus
(08/03/2007) Corrections on some ID’s
Dear Bugman,
Today I found a very eye-catching specimen of Urocerus Albicornis, the White-horned Horntail, wandering around on a Douglas Fir in extreme NW Washington State (near Ferndale) and laying eggs. I didn’t know what it was, but I captured it in a very high-tech device (empty paper soda cup courtesy of Burger King!) and brought it home, and after doing a little web-research, found out that it was the critter mentioned above. Actually, it was your website that really helped me make the leap forward finally – I wasn’t getting very far on any of the other so-called “identification” sites. So anyway, after I verified what it was, I tried to get some more information about it, but there doesn’t appear to be very much other than a very very few pictures. Almost NO information to speak of online. However, in the course of my ferreting around I finally came back to your site, and found several other pictures of this very dapper bug. But it looks like they are mis-identified, so I wanted to let you know. In response to the posting by Devon on 7/22/05, you state that it is a “Smoky Horntail,” and in response to a posting on 7/28/07 by Peter, it was ID’d as a “Wood Wasp…might be Urocerus Albicornis.” There were also several other postings that look very much like this bug, only the wings are more rust-colored – these are ID’d as Urocerus Californicus. (9/12/06 by Annie and one other, I don’t remember the date/poster though). I do have to apologize for not taking a picture of it for you guys before I released it, it was a real beauty. I’m glad I didn’t kill it though. … Also, must say, GREAT SITE!!!! Totally fascinating, to say the least. I spent WAY more time browsing around looking at all the cool bugs than the time I needed to find out about the Horntails. Two thumbs up!
Sean in Ferndale, Washington

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Not a Large Milkweed Bug – what is it
Hi … I think I may have found something new for you. Found this pair of bugs mating on a rock. Looked through your website and it comes closest to the Large Milkweed Bug (LMB). However, look carefully at the segmented antennae. After the base, there are 9 segments on these bugs, whereas the LMB has only 3. Also, the face is black, whereas the LMB’s face is orange. And the backs are somewhat like ‘corduroy’, whereas the LMB has an ‘X’ in the center. Lastly, the size is different. I believe LMB’s are about 1/2″ long, whereas the body of the larger one I captured was about 1″ long. What’s that bug?
Woburn, MA

Hi Mark,
These are mating Banded Netwing Beetles, Calopteron reticulatum. They are often mistaken for moths.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

bug??? Hi,
I was wondering what kind of bug this is. There were at least 30 of them on the tree at once. I am located in Grand Rapids MI. Thank you soooo much for your time!

Megarhyssa atrata Megarhyssa macrurus

Hi Melissa,
You have submitted photos of two different species of Giant Ichneumons. The black specimen with the yellow head is Megarhyssa atrata and the brown and yellow individual is Megarhyssa macrurus. Giant Ichneumons are beneficial insects, though they are often mistaken for wood wasps upon which they feed. The adult female Giant Ichneumon uses her formidable ovipositor to deposit eggs in wood infested with wood boring larvae of the Pigeon Horntail and other Wood Wasps. The young Ichneumon parasites the wood boring larva. We have gotten so many images of Giant Ichneumons this summer we have decided to make it the Bug of the Month for August.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

British Columbia Insect
We found the attached bug in a campsite in a pine forest near Princeton, BC. It was about an inch long, and when we poked it (gently, of course), it flipped onto its back. In the hour or so we watched it, it didn’t move at all, aside from the backflips. I’ve tried to identify it online, but the closest match I’ve been able to find is a Mormon cricket, and this one looks slightly different and doesn’t have the long ovipositor. Any ideas what it might be? Thanks very much,

Hi Chris,
This is a wonderful contribution to our site. This creature is a Great Grig, Cyphoderris monstrosa. Grigs are in the family Prophalangopsidae, the Hump Winged Crickets. They are in the suborder Ensifera or Long Horned Orthopterans that includes Katydids, Potato Bugs, and Crickets, but taxonomically, they are a distinct group. We have only received one other photo in the past, and it has been alone on our Grig page until now.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination