From the monthly archives: "September 2007"

A question about … a bug!
Great site … say I, as I type on a keyboard graced by a dead ‘Longhorn’ of some description (found by my wife in the innards of a malfunctioning microwave and left here for my admiration, no doubt). I have a picture or two for you and, probably, an easy one for you to identify … “just a dumb old cricket” the opinion of one secretary I had hoped to gross out, totally unimpressed by my find. Not like any cricket I ever saw though (I grew up back east where they are all black and have flatter bodies and larger, more angulated hind legs). And we never hear the chirping of crickets around here either … “here” being west-central Alberta, in the heart of the Canadian Rockies.. Anyway – this specimen was found in, floating near the bottom in, a full water trough one morning. I went down to feed the ponies and this beast was only about one inch off the bottom and lifeless. I scooped it out but caried it around while doing the rest of the chores, hoping to identify it later or show it to someone who could. Eventually, about half an hour later, when showing it to someone, it had grabbed onto my fingers and wouldn’t let go. So – I did the befriend-a-bug thing, took it’s picture and let it go. (There must be some award on this site for such gallantry – though I could as easily fill your ‘carnage’ pages.) Any definitive I.D. on this one? (Sorry for the unintended use of the flash but I had let it go before I realized what it had done to the pictures.) … and how long can they survive under water, anyway … or would he have had brain damage?
Terry in Alberta

Hi Terry,
This is a Grig, a Hump Winged Cricket. It is a member of a family found in the Pacific Northwest. Sorry, we can’t answer your questions about drowning or brain damage.

greetings bugman! here for you i have a picture of an ootheca which you i thought you might like to put on your ‘eggs’ page. when i first found it i had no idea what it was, and was touching it way more than i would’ve had i known what creature it came from! gross. after searching ‘brown egg case’ a picture came up that sent shivers down my spine, for it was of the ootheca still attached to its mother roach. i understand roaches are important for the environment, but that didnt stop me from throwing it over my neighbors fence. they’ll probably find their way back to me anyway, they always seem to. thanks!
ps- sorry about the cat hair!

Thank you so much for adding to our archive with your awesome Cockroach Ootheca.

Red Banded Hairstreak?
Hey bugman,
thanks so much for posting my photo of the wheelbug. I have another one to share with you. I believe this is a red-banded hairstreak (correct me if im wrong). there were two of them nectaring on some goldenrod the other day and i took some pics. I think this was my favorite one. Enjoy and thanks again for a wonderful website.
Mike D.

Hi again Mike,
Your Red Banded Hairstreak photo is awesome. Thanks for adding to our archive.

spider ID in China
I live on a small island in southeastern China. I often go hiking, and I come across this spider quite often. It’s certainly the largest spider I’ve ever found, and I’d like to know more about it for safety’s sake and also just out of curiosity. I browsed through the spider sections on your site, and I’m wondering if it’s a "Nephila clavipes." I’ve attached a picture of it. By the way, I think is an excellent resource. It has helped me many times, especially since I’ve been living here (and don’t speak the language very well). Thanks for sharing your expertise! Best,

Hi Tobias,
Nephila clavipes, the Golden Silk Spider, is a New World species, but there are many more members of the genus in Asia. The closest we can find is an immature specimen on Wikipedia of Nephila pilipes which ranges in Japan ,China ,Taiwan ,Singapore ,Myanmar ,Sri Lanka ,India ,Papua New Guinea , and Northern Australia.

What’s this bug?? Some type of Preying Mantis
Hallo there.
I stay in Tzaneen, South Africa. I found this Praying Mantis on the flowers of a Duranta shrub. Looks like it might be the African Mantis. Any comments would be appreciated. Regards
Johan van Eeden

Hi Johan,
This is indeed a Preying Mantis, a Spiny Flower Mantis, Pseudocreobotra ocellata or Pseudocreobotra wahlbergii.

Flying Bug
Hi wtb,
Can you identify this bug for me? Its body is approximately 1.25″ long. I don’t know what plant he was on having spotted him on our stucco wall where he stayed about 2 – 2 1/2 days, then he went his way. Thanks,
Ray B

Hi Ray,
We got many requests for the identification of Banded Alder Borers several months ago. Sadly, your letter did not indicate where or when you took this image.