From the monthly archives: "March 2009"

Tarantula Eating Man Killer
Mon, Mar 23, 2009 at 1:15 AM
I am currently serving in a mission for my church in Kisumu, Kenya. One night during the time just before the rainy season (March) my companion and I were playing Rook when we heard a knocking at the door. We came out to inspect, but saw no one. So this happened several times and we finally got curious enough to investigate. We thought maybe it was some kids, but we were wrong. We saw this little thing on our porch. I was about to kill it when my companion suggested we take some pictures. I went to get the Rook card for scale and when I bent down to put the card next to the bug, it flew right at my face. I dodged it, more surprised than scared, and it flew into the door (And it made the knocking sound we were hearing) and fell on its back. While it was still dazed I took the card, set it next to the bug and took the picture. I have been wondering what it was. I swear that this thing is the biggest bug in the world! Besides maybe a tarantula. But this thing feeds on them! Well I don’t know for sure, but I think it could.
Elder Collyer
Kisumu Kenya

Giant Water Bug

Giant Water Bug

Dear Elder,
This is a Giant Water Bug in the family Belostomatidae.  In the U.S. they are also known as Electric Light Bugs since they are attracted to lights, and Toe-Biters because of the painful bite.  They are aquatic predators that do not eat tarantulas.  They are adept at flying as well as swimming, but are clumsy on the ground.  They are found around the world and are eaten in Thailand.

Scorpionfly from Australia – Accomplished Hunters
Sat, Mar 21, 2009 at 6:38 PM
Hi again,
I took these shots of our local scorpionfly. Unlike other versions ours is an accomplished hunter of live prey. Check out those talon like hind legs. The assassin and related bugs such as the pod sucking bug (Riptortus serripes) seem to be a favoured target.
aussietrev
Queensland, Australia

Scorpionfly or Hanging Fly

Scorpionfly or Hanging Fly

Hi Trevor,
Thanks so much for sending and identifying this unusual looking Scorpionfly and its prey. According to the Brisbane Insect Website, there is only one species of Scorpionfly from the order Mecoptera in Australia. It is Harpobittacus tillyardi in the family Bittacidae, and it is sometimes called a Hanging Fly.

Scorpionfly captures Pod Sucking Bug

Scorpionfly captures Pod Sucking Bug

The detail photo of the Pod Sucking Bug is a nice addition. According to the Brisbane Insect Website, the Pod Sucking Bug, Riptortus serripes, is a Broad Headed Bug in the family Alydidae. Immature Pod Sucking Bugs are ant mimics.  Now that spring has arrived in the northern hemisphere, and our weather is warming, our southern readers in the U.S. are starting to send letters our way.  Mail volume is increasing and we had to go back a few days to post your wonderful submission.  More and more mail will go unanswered as the volume continues to increase.

Pod Sucking Bug captured by Scorpionfly

Pod Sucking Bug captured by Scorpionfly

Mating Cecropia Moths
Tue, Mar 24, 2009 at 9:06 AM
Thought this photo would be great for your Bug Love section. Beginning of April last year (2008), I saw these 2 Cecropia Moths on a bush at the school I teach at in Buckholts, Texas (central Texas area). I was amazed first by the size of these moths (as I had never seen any moths of this size), and then that I was seeing 2 of them together (figuratively and literally)! The Cecropia Moth has to be the most beautiful insect I’ve ever seen!
Scott Snyder
Central Texas

Cecropia Moths Mating

Cecropia Moths Mating

Dear Scott,
Though your photo was taken last year, it is just about the right time of year for our southern readers to begin sighting the beautiful Cecropia Moth.

Luna Moth Spotted
Tue, Mar 24, 2009 at 9:14 AM
I’ve already determined what it is but I got a great shot of it I wanted to share with your readers. I do have it in much higher res if you want. I spotted it on the wall when coming into my shop the other morning and it was so interesting I had to grab my camera and get a shot of it. Enjoy the photo.
Rich
West Columbia, SC

Luna Moth

Luna Moth

Dear Rich,
We always love posting the first Luna Moth of the new year.  Thanks ever so much for your gorgeous photograph.

Tenebrionidae from Argentina
Mon, Mar 23, 2009 at 4:24 AM
HI!
I´m sending a couple of pictures from Scotobius milliaris, Family Tenebrionidae. I´ve taken them in San Antonio Oeste, Río Negro, Patagonia.
This is a common species living in central Argentina, but expandig its distribution to cities in Patagonia, where you can find it only in garden´s houses. It is easy to see adult – larva under fallen leaves and walking on the grass. Some call them “catanguitas”.
I believe there aren´t any picture of this species on the web yet.
Hugs
Mirta

Darkling Beetle

Darkling Beetle

Hi again Mirta,
Thanks for allowing What’s That Bug? to be the first site to picture this lovely Darkling Beetle in the family Tenebrionidae.  It resembles our Southern California Ironclad Beetle.  We have been so busy with work and our new aquarium that we have been a bit lax in posting new submissions, only about one or two a day at the moment.

Darkling Beetle

Darkling Beetle

Black with orange spot… not a centipede
Sun, Mar 22, 2009 at 6:11 PM
Hi I found this interesting specimen in George Washington national park located in Staunton Virginia. I have never seen anything like it and have been camping there for about ten years. I was hoping you would be able to ID it for me as it’s a very interesting and colorful insect. I thank you for your time and effort… I love your site and have used it extensively to satisfy my curiosity about bugs…
Thanks!!
David Barton
Staunton Virginia

Glowworm

Glowworm

Dear David,
What a positively magnificent Glowworm Larva you have photographed. it is in the family Phengodidae. There is an identical specimen posted on BugGuide that was photographed in North Carolina. It is unfortunate that you didn’t have the opportunity to see it glowing a luminescent green in the dark.  Glowworms are also known as Railroad Worms.

Glowworm

Glowworm