From the monthly archives: "June 2008"

cecropia and others
Hi! A couple of years ago I sent you pictures of my Cecropia project — I raised a bunch of caterpillars and was rewarded with beautiful moths the next spring. Last year I was fortunate enough to get more caterpillars, and I wanted to share some images of the moths. Very serendipitously, as you’ve made them your bug of the month for July. For your bug love page, here’s images of Red Milkweed Beetles (Tetraopes tetraophthalmus) and Scarlet and Green Leafhoppers (Graphocephala coccinea) — one with the two leafhoppers getting advice from the beetle! I’ve included a pic of a Nessus Sphinx (Amphion floridensis) that I took last year in my back yard. According to the folks at Butterflies and Moths of North America ( ) it’s a first report from MN, so that’s pretty exciting. I know it’s not a great pic but I thought you might like to see it 🙂 Lastly is a pic of what I think is Labidomera clivicollis, Swamp Milkweed Leaf Beetle. What do you think? Thanks as always for a great site

hi Henry,
While we applaud your enthusiasm and are impressed with the volume if imagery you sent our way, we have to limit our postings. We are thrilled to post your mating Candystriped Leafhoppers and a cropped version of the three Cecropia Moths on your window screen, awaiting an opportunity to venture into the night.

sable moths
Hello bug people,
Thought you might enjoy this photo of what I think are White Spotted Sables, Anania funebris. They were on my deck in upstate New York in early June. My five-year-old son and I thought they were very handsome, although we had different theories about what they might be doing.
Kathie & Cole

Hi Kathie and Cole,
Cole is correct. The White Spotted Sable Moths are mating. Kathie, we are not sure what you thought they were doing.

WHOA! Weird bug!
Hey Bugman! I live in Tampa, Florida. The other day I was in my backyard the other day at night with some friends. Suddenly my friend screams and yells that something smacked her face! I shined the light on her face and suddenly I realized that there was this bug just chilling on the side of her face! Of course, me being the animal and bug lover I am, I snatch it off her face before she smooshed it and took a quick picture of it to send to you. I looked in my florida wildlife book and didnt see anything that looked like this. Can you identify it? P.S. It was safely released and flew away. Thanks!
Cammy P.

Hi Cammy,
This appears to be a female Common Conehead, probably in the genus Neoconocephalus as evidenced by images on BugGuide, though females with their swordlike ovipositors are underrepresented on the site.

Update: (07/03/2008) Katydid IDs from Piotr Naskrecki
I have been looking at the page with unidentified katydids (Katydids 2), and thought I could help with some ID’s. From top to bottom they are: Florida conehead – Bucrates malivolans

firefly look alike
I saw this guy crawling around a garden in Houston, Tx and could not identify him (or her). At first glance, I thought it was a firefly, but of course he isn’t. He moved pretty quickly and looks like a roach. He was about 3/4" long and wouldn’t stand still for a good picture. Thanks

hi Daniel,
This is a Pale Bordered Field Cockroach, Pseudomops septentrionalis. It is an outdoor species that visits flowers and does not infest homes.

We were camping along Pine Creek in PA. This insect hung around for 2 days. Never saw anything like it before. Could you please identify it for us. Thanks
Bill & Maryann

Hi Bill and Maryann,
This is a male Dobsonfly. For some reason its wings have atrophied. Without properly developed wings, he will not fly. The male Dobsonfly is a spectacular insect and though frightening looking, it is harmless. You should see how magnificent a properly developed male looks next to your poor disabled creature.

One I know, one I don’t
Here are a couple of pics of critters from my back yard in Debary, FL (Central Florida) The butterfly, an Old World Swallowtail, was only minutes to hours old when I snapped the photo – not sure how long they take to fly. He came home with us from a nursery yesterday on the Key West lime he’s hanging from in the picture. He was stretching out his still soft wings this morning when I took the picture and was gone an hour after this photo. The other pic is of a very small spider I’ve never seen before. The leaf he’s on is Thai Basil and is no more than an inch long. Do you know this little guy?

Hi Alex,
The butterfly you have identified as an Old World Swallowtail is actually a Giant Swallowtail, Papilio cresphontes. Key Lime is a larval food plant for the caterpillars which are known as Orange Dogs. We would need more time to identify your spider which is one of the Orbweavers.