From the monthly archives: "June 2008"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Unknown Underwing Moth in New Mexico
Hey Bugman!
This amazingly colored underwing moth showed up tonight outside my house directly beneath my porchlight (where millions of other undesirable moths tend to gather). I have never seen anything quite like it before, and absolutely had to know what type of moth it is. The moth also had strange and rather large for its size orange fuzzy antennas (which the close up depicts). Its eyes, or what I deemed to be the eyes, were also quite small. Also I live in central New Mexico and was wondering what other species of moth I might hope to encounter on my porch on some future evening. Anyway, here are a few pictures of both pairs of its wings fully exposed.

Hi Carl,
What a gorgeous specimen. This is a Zephyr Eyed Silkmoth, Automeris zephyria, that we identified on the Butterflies and Moths of North America website. That website indicates the limitations of the range of this species as being: “Habitat: Pinyon-juniper woodland and conifer forest above 4800 feet elevation. Range: Mountains of central New Mexico south into the Guadalupe Mountains of west Texas. ” Thank you ever so much for contributing a new species to our site.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Odd Damselfly?
Hi! I’ve been enjoying your site, and have identified various bugs, including a gorgeous giant leopard moth. But I’ve got a bug that I haven’t been able to find anywhere. My children found it right next to our door last week. I took one picture, then got it to move and took another picture. It seemed to be pretty much all one dark brown color, except its wings, which were translucent with dark brown veins. At first I thought it was a moth because of the way the wings were held, but then I saw the exceptionally long abdomen, the translucent wings, and the rest of it, it just didn’t look like a moth. I couldn’t tell if it had one or two sets of wings. I was wondering if it might be some odd sort of damselfly? Sorry I had to take pictures of it on brick, I know that’s not helpful. Thank you!
Marilyn, in Florida

Hi Marilyn,
This is an Antlion, probably Brachynemurus longicaudus. You can find them on our Neuropteran pages.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

What bug would make this hole?
I live in Southern California. Over the weekend, I noticed sawdust on a bougainvillea plant in my backyard. It runs along a concrete wall that borders my neighbors property. The sawdust was the result of these perfectly round, pencil erasure sized holes which have been recently dug into the plant. What bug would do this? Thanks,

Hi Chuck,
This is the nest of a Valley Carpenter Bee. The large black female bee makes and provisions the nest. The male bee is a lovely golden color. The Valley Carpenter Bee is an important native pollinating species, and the presence of this nest will not do any lasting harm to your bougainvillea.

Thank you so much for your informative reply. I am pleased your site exists. In explaining the harmlessness of this important native pollinator, you have helped me from making a grave, unnecessary mistake of adding a systemic poison to my bougainvillea the way a member of the Home Depot gardening staff suggested to protect it from “wood boring beetles”. I’m glad I had the presence of mind to contact you but I am more pleased at your willingness to share your expertise on this subject and the timeliness of your answer. Thanks again,
Monrovia, CA

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Identifying A VERY FAST Ant-Eating Bug
We’ve lived in and around Wake County in North Carolina for over 50 years now, and saw the following bug for the first time this past weekend. He would just sit still until something, ANYTHING, would move and then he was off like a shot. However, he only made a meal out of ants, and didn’t miss a single one that left their hill and ventured onto our patio. He’s actually about 1/2 to 3/4 inches long. Would love to know what he is. Hope you can help. Many thanks!
P. Elaine Huntley

Hi P. Elaine,
This is a Tiger Beetle, probably a Six Spotted Tiger Beetle. We especially like the information your provided regarding this beetles fondness for ants.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

a large moth
While we were visiting our son’s cottage at Pine Lake, Alberta, Canada, we found this specimen "stuck" to a doorscreen. Since it sat there for the longest time we assumed it was emerging from it’s cocoon. However, this may not be the case at all! It is not exactly like any of the images on your Web site so we would appreciate it very much if you could give a name to this lovely exotic creature. It’s wingspan was approx. 5". A friend suggested it was a Giant Silk Moth. Thanks,

Hi Angela,
Your moth is a Columbia Silk Moth, Hyalophora columbia, one of the Giant Silk Moths. We have numerous images of them on our Saturnid or Giant Silk Moth pages.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination