From the monthly archives: "May 2009"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Black insect on Queen’s delight
Sun, May 24, 2009 at 3:52 PM
Can you help me ID this small black insect on Stillingia sylvatica (“Queen’s-delight”? It was on most of the flowers. Because of the pointy tail I was guessing it was immature? An instar of a wood-boring beetle perhaps? (Just guessing). Thanks for your help.
Joan
Georgia, Appling County

Rove Beetle

Tumbling Flower Beetle

Dear Joan,
Our money is on this being a Rove Beetle in the family Staphylinidae. According to BugGuide, there are “In North America, about 17 subfamilies, 313 genera, 3100 species.” We hope to get a second opinion on this being a Rove Beetle. According to our Audubon Guide: “most Rove Beetles and their larvae oprey upon mites, other insects, and small worms. They are usually found on mushrooms, flowers, or under bark.”

Correction: from Eric Eaton Mon, 25 May 2009 08:36:54 -0700 (PDT)
Daniel:
Nope.  It is a “tumbling flower beetle,” family Mordellidae.  Can’t tell more than that from the image alone.
Eric

Thanks for the correction Eric.  We can link to BugGuide which states:  “Body humpbacked, more or less wedge-shaped; broadest at front; head is bent forward, attached ventrally; abdomen pointy, extending beyond elytra. Hind legs enlarged. They kick and tumble about when disturbed. Black or gray, some brown; hairy, sometimes light patches of hair form pattern. Antennae short to moderate, threadlike, sawtoothed or clubbed. “

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Bug Found on our Milkweed
Sun, May 24, 2009 at 8:32 AM
Found this bug on our milkweed plants. We had Monarch eggs and caterpillars but now there are none. Is this a bug we should suspect has hurt our Monarch eggs and caterpillars? What is this bug?
Ira in Texas
San Antonio, Texas

Ladybird Larva

Ladybird Larva

Dear Ira,
This is the larva of a Ladybird Beetle or Lady Bug.  The presence of this larva indicates that there are probably Aphids on your milkweed.  The Ladybird Larva will eat Aphids, but it will not bother the Monarch Caterpillars.  You must have another culprit.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

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?
Backyard Entomologist
Central Massachusetts, Suburban

Goldsmith Beetle

Goldsmith Beetle

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.

Goldsmith Beetle

Goldsmith Beetle

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

BLACK AND GOLD BEETLE
Sun, May 24, 2009 at 7:52 AM
We live in Central Florida and my boys brought this beetle into the house to show me. Can you identify it? We looked in our Field Guide to North American Insects and Spiders but couldn’t find it.
Jack and Ben
Central Florida

Harlequin Flower Beetle

Harlequin Flower Beetle

Dear Jack and Ben,
This beauty is a Harlequin Flower Beetle, Gymnetis caseyi, a species that BugGuide reports from Texas and Florida. We especially love that the markings on the Harlequin Flower Beetle resemble the Rorschach Test ink blots.

Daniel,  Thanks so much for the quick reply.  My boys really enjoy the website.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

shiny green bug
Sat, May 23, 2009 at 7:44 PM
bit me, just wondered what it is, never seen one before
Leona
se wa state

Unknown Ground Beetle

Bark Gnawing Beetle

Dear Leona,
This is a Ground Beetle in the family Carabidae, but we are not having much luck with the species. We will contact Eric Eaton for assistance, and perhaps one of our readers will know the answer.

Correction: One of our readers wrote in with a tip that this is a Bark Gnawing Beetle in the genus Temnoscheila based on images posted to BugGuide.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Hellgramite in a hole
Sat, May 23, 2009 at 8:07 PM
Hello. My husband and I had a truck full of screened loam delivered for projects around the yard and it appears to be loaded with hellgramites! I looked at the hellgramite photos on your website and didn’t see any of them in their “natural habitat” (basically a hole in the ground), so I thought you might like this one. This one had burrowed into the ground under a brick that was holding a tarp down to keep the loam dry.
Funny thing… we actually learned about hellgramites and Dobson flies a few of years ago from this website. Shortly after our move to our house along a small river in New Hampshire, we saw our first crazy, prehistoric-looking hellgramite on our driveway. We don’t typically notice that many of them, maybe a couple of hellgramites and Dobson flies a year, but we have seen dozens of them over the past few days as we have been shoveling and raking the dirt.
PGF in NH
Southern NH, Monadnock Region

Hellgrammite in a hole

Hellgrammite in a hole

Dear PGF,
We are happy to be going strong and continuing to serve the curious after all these years.  We are greatly appreciative to be able to post your wonderful photo of a Hellgrammite in its hole.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination