From the monthly archives: "October 2007"

I went hiking in feather falls near oraville in northern California on Sunday October 30th, 2007. I came upon a log cut off with tons of pinkesh red insects in a cluster on them. It was damp and starting to get dark outside at the time I found them. Got any idea of what they might be? Thanks,
Shawn J. Ledet

Hi Shawn,
This is a cluster of Millipedes. When we searched BugGuide for a species, we found images of Brachycybe lecontii with the description: “One frequently finds clusters with several sizes and age-classes under bark on decaying logs & stumps” that is credited to Dr. Rowland Shelley. The submissions to BugGuide came from Louisiana, Georgia and Tennessee, not the Pacific Northwest, so we did more research. There is reference on BugGuide that the species is covered in books on the Pacific Northwest.

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? 10/30/07 . Cluster from Calif. They are probably Brachycybe rosea Murray (order Platydesmida: family Andrognathidae).
Rowland Shelley
North Carolina State Museum of Natural Science

Killer bug!
Hi all,
I caught this little guy while trolling ditches for inverts for my naturalized tank at work. He was about 2.5″ long and particularily vicious. He killed virtually ever other invert in the tank, stole food from the 9 shiners and 1 “wild-caught” koi and the small frog and generally made a demon of himself. I think it’s a hellgrammite? Or some kind of stone nymph. Anyhow, the tank overheated one weekend during a power failure and i lost killer bug and my frog. 🙁 Keep up the good work! Cheers,
Vancouver, BC

Hi Alicia,
This is a Water Tiger, the larva of a Predaceous Diving Beetle. There is an interesting description on a website known as Findarticles. We are sorry to hear about you stewing your local fauna tank. It sounds like a refreshing change for the usual jobsite aquarium. We once kept a Los Angeles River aquarium going for five years. Though the winged insects flew away, the three mosquito fish produced many generations until they finally succumbed to a rogue raccoon. We kept the aquarium outside on the patio.

Update: (11/04/2007) edible: water tigers
Hi Daniel and Lisa Anne,
I hope you both had a good trip to D.C. Both larval and adult predatory/scavenging water beetles are eaten in China and Southeastern Asia. A batch of adult Water Beetles were collected for me in Louisiana this past summer; I hope to receive them soon. They were gathered with light traps that some insect-hunters used; swarms of various insects came. I’m wondering if any of your readers know of people who collect insects this way, and if anyone has tried putting lights over the shallows of a pond to attract larvae and other water insects. If so I’d love to learn about their experiences. Best,
Dave Gracer

White-Tipped Black Geometrid
Thanks for your great website. It helped us identify the White-Tipped Geometrids that were nectaring on Goldenrod in our Houston, Texas garden. I thought you might enjoy a more detailed photo.
Bill Miller

Hi Bill,
We just returned from a national journalism convention with our students and we don’t know how we are going to manage to answer even a tiny percentage of our email backlog. We have received at least three requests to identify White Tipped Blacks in the past week, and your image of Melanchroia chephise is by far the best. Thanks for sending it to our site.

What is it
My wife and I found this bug near a small lake close to our home town of Invermere B.C. Canada. We nicknamed it a beemoth. Its aprox 3/4" long and 1 1/4" wide. The picture was take in May of 2006. Just curious what the proper name would be.
Matthew Holden

Hi Matthew,
We identified your Yellow Banded Sphinx, Proserpinus flavofasciata, on Bill Oehlke’s excellent site, and then verified its identification on the Butterflies and Moths of North America site. Both sites only have images of mounted specimens. We are indebted to Bill Oehlke’s site for countless identifications of Sphinx Moths, and we even write to him when we are puzzled. We are quite certain he would love to post your image of this tiny bee-mimic to his site as well.

Unknown Beetle
Hi Bug Guy,
Love your site! I look up everything I’m not sure of and find wonderfully interesting bugs in my searches! Thank you for this great website. Here is a beetle I came across recently on my walk in the desert in Cochise County, Oct 01 2007. I was unable to find an exact match at whatsthatbug and hope you can help me with the ID. Thanks again,
Carol Breton
Cochise County, Arizona

Hi Carol,
The reason you were unable to identify your Double-Banded Bycid, Sphaenothecus bivittatus, on our site is because until now, it was not represented. We matched your image to a photo on BugGuide, and that specimen was also in Arizona. We will check with Eric Eaton to ensure that our identification is correct.