From the monthly archives: "August 2008"

I want to thank you for all the help you have provided me over the last few years. Haven’t heard of me? That’s because I have been a lurker on your site for years. You have provided countless answers to questions for found bugs and critters with all the previous answers to the questions of others. You are also helping us alter my 7 and 5 year olds from "stomp first, and ask questions later" into "catch and releasers." It’s hard being a dad and having to know all the answers to questions without people like the two of you. I do know a lot about bugs and insects, but on many occasions I am stumped. I even go on your site for fun to scroll through all the cool images. I actually can’t go on line without them wanting to visit your site.
Any way here is a photo of a newly emerged cicada in the spirit of the changes you will be going through on your site. Taken today in South Jersey. We checked on him/her through out the morning until it was there no more. Fare thee well !

Dear Dad,
We’ve got to begin by stating that Just (in all its forms) should never be used to describe noble roles. We are thrilled that you have crossed the line from being a lurker to an interactive reader. We have gotten numerous images of Cicada Metamorphosis in recent weeks, but neglected to post them for various reasons. Since we are officially into the Dog Days of Summer, it seems appropriate to post your lovely image of an Annual Cicada or Dog Day Harvestfly. There is another exoskeleton of a metamorphised nymph visible in the lower right corner of your photo. We are strong supporters of change and look forward to many changes in the coming months.

Hi I found this monster in my koi pond in Iowa. I thought he was dead, but I laid him gently out to dry. He’s still alive and crawling around. Can you tell me what it is? I have a couple of other pictures of it.
Donna Hansford

Hi Donna,
It is the time of the year for caterpillars that burrow in the ground to pupate to leave their trees and shrubs in search of a place to metamorphose. These large caterpillars have gone unnoticed as they were feeding, but many of or readers encounter them once they reach ground level. Your caterpillar is an Imperial Moth Caterpillar.

Warf Borer Love!
Ha! I think I got one that you don’t have…maybe… Well, at least not on your buglove pages 😉 And just for kicks, a seven spotted lady beetle. All taken in Cayuga Ontario.
Cheryl-Anne Miller

Hi Cheryl-Anne,
We do have a single image of a Warf Borer sent in 2005 and posted on Beetles 3, so the species is under-represented on our site. Your photo of a mating pair is a welcome addition. The Warf Borer, Nacerdes melanura, according to BugGuide, was: “Introduced from Europe. They have been found in wharf timbers between flooding and the high water level, especially which were in badly decayed, well-riddled wood. A severe infestation occurred in greenhouse benches in Ohio. Annual swarming of adult beetles, especially into new structures, can disrupt business operations and annoy homeowners and apartment tenants.” BugGuide also indicates: “Beetles mate in rotten wood kept moist and deposit eggs, which hatch into larvae. Pupation and adulthood follow. The life cycle from egg to adult is usually completed in one year, but in cooler climates, several years may be required to reach adulthood.” We have noticed that you have sent us multiple emails with numerous images. More than one species per letter makes archiving letters much more difficult. Once we attend to the countless other emails we have received, we will return to your communiques to see if any other images will be posted. Thanks for your contribution.

What is this?
Hope you can help…I have a number of these bugs crawling all over my shagbark hickory. Are they dangerous to the hickory? We are in south eastern Michigan. I would swear that they have five pairs of legs….or are they very thin wings? I didn’t see any flying around, but I didn’t watch for long. Hopefully you can help me identify them. Thanks,

hi Paul,
Your beetle also has two heads, because it is a mating pair. These are Long Horned Borer Beetles and we believe they are in the genus Neoclytus, probably Neoclytus mucronatus or Neoclytus scutellaris. According to BugGuide, Neoclytus mucronatus will feed on dead or dying hickory, but BugGuide also lists hickory as a food for Neoclytus scutellaris. We will contact Eric Eaton to see if he can be more conclusive.

I found this group of bugs traveling in a group across my front doorstep, have you ever seen these before? Acworth, GA just North of Atlanta

We are relatively certain these are Florida Predatory Stink Bug nymphs, Euthyrhynchus floridanus. The social marching behavior is interesting. We do not know at what stage the nymphs become solitary hunters, and we have not been successful at finding that information. This Stink Bug is also called a Halloween Bug.

unidentified bugs
These are some bugs I found at my aunt’s house in central Oklahoma. I hope all the pics get through. The first three pics are of a strange flying insect I have never seen before. It is about an inch and a half long, with slightly longer wings. It has the wings and jaws of a dragonfly, but the furry body and antennae of a butterfly. This strange little guy holds his wings kind of like a dobsonfly. … I love your site, and it has been a great help in identifying some of my mystery bugs. Thanks for all you do,

Hi Josh,
Your mystery insect is an Owlfly in the family Ascalaphidae. Owlflies are Neuropterans, so your comparison to a Dobsonfly makes sense. Your one photo shows a grooved eye which indicates the genus Ululodes.