Big Yellow Beetle (Specifics Needed)
Sun, May 24, 2009 at 3:02 PM
Dear What’s That Bug,
My family was enjoying a walk through town recently when the youngest of us stumbled across this bumbling bug. Physiologically this looks like a typical Junebug, but the extraordinary colors seem to say different. Is this a special type of Junebug, or just a rare color morph?
Central Massachusetts, Suburban
Dear Backyard Entomologist,
The Goldsmith Beetle, Cotalpa lanigera, is also known as a Gold bug, and according to BugGuide “This was supposedly Poe’s Gold-bug , according to the account at Clemson .” BugGuide also indicates: “Adults feed on willow, poplar foliage” and “Female scatters eggs on soil near a tree. Larvae burrow to reach their food source, rotting logs and roots. They pupate at the end of one or two years in earthen cells.” BugGuide also states “This beetle is usually listed as uncommon.” This is a very exciting posting for us, both because of the rarity of the Goldsmith Beetle, and because of the Poe reference for the Gold Bug.