From the monthly archives: "March 2010"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

March 29, 2010
Lefty and Digitalis still have at least 60 surviving fry.  They are getting larger each day and there is quite a size discrepancy between the largest and smallest fry.  The largest fry are eating smallish mosquito larvae that I have begun catching outside in a water feature in the front yard.  The fry are over one month old.

Lefty (top) and Digitalis continue to care for fry

Boris and Media Luna started laying eggs this afternoon.  They have begun laying on the glass despite the fact that I cleaned off the filter intake tube yesterday, removing all the algae.  Yesterday I cleaned the filter and changed about a third of the water.  Last week I fed live Tubifex Worms to all three aquariums.

Boris (top) and Media Luna spawn

Any eggs that drop from the glass are getting eaten by Media Luna.

Boris (top) and Media Luna spawn

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Big Gambian water loving bug
March 29, 2010
Hi Bug peeps, recently got married in the gambia, west africa and stayed with my mum. She often gets these huge bugs in her pool – they are about 6″ including the long tail, and when they are fished out and dried off, their underbellies are bright orange. Any ideas what they might be? I’m guessing that’s not a sting… I hope!
Alison, UK
Gambia, west africa

Water Scorpion

Greetings Alison,
This is an impressive Water Scorpion, and though the name might imply a stinger, you are correct that it is not a stinger.  The Water Scorpion breathes through that extremity, using it like a snorkel.  Water Scorpions are quite capable of producing a painful bite if they are carelessly handled, but the bite comes from its piercing beak, the means by which it sucks nourishment from any prey it captures with is raptorial front legs.

Wow, thanks Daniel!
They always seem pretty chilled out, they never try to bite –  they just have a swim, then dry off to fly off in a swirl of neon orange – they lumber along the ground but they are graceful otherwise.
I’ll let Mum know, she could not remember what the local name for them was but she’ll be glad to know what they are.
Very much appreciated!

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Whitefly Pupa???
March 29, 2010
3:1 before crop. I’m completely oblivious to what this is….
Found it on a tangerine leaf this December.
Jonathan Campos
Los Angeles, CA

Unknown Scale

Hi Jonathan,
This appears to be some species of Soft Scale Insect in the family Coccidae.  We found a photo on BugGuide of Saissetia coffeae that looks similar, but different nonetheless.  There is also something of a resemblance to the Soft Brown Scale, Coccus hesperidum, also pictured on BugGuide.  We are fairly certain your photo depicts a different, though related species.  Scale Insects can do great harm to agricultural crops and ornamental plants.  We are concerned that this might be a newly imported Citrus Pest as though the threat of the Citrus Psyllid, profiled on Featured Creatures, isn’t enough.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Is this a Longhorn beetle (Phymatodes amoenus)?
March 29, 2010
I was hiking in the mountains in Ludlow, very rural area and came upon a small migration of these beetles. Some were tail to tail. They just seemed to pose on rocks and were in an area about 3 feet by 6 feet. What are these?
I don’t have a preference
Ludlow, California.

Master Blister Beetle

Dear without a preference,
This is the third photo we have posted in the past week of a Master Blister Beetle, Lytta magister, and we are considering making it the Bug of the Month for April.  It is found in the spring in deserts of Arizona and California as well as Mexico, Nevada and Utah.

thank you so kindly. I hope you have a beautiful day.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

costa rican beetle
March 28, 2010
This beetle was in the InBioParque in San Jose, Costa Rica last summer. It crawled to the sunny ends of branches and twigs. I only saw it by itself. Do you know what kind of beetle this is?
costa Rica, San Jose, InBioParque

Pleasing Fungus Beetle

Hi again Jenny,
This is our final response for the night.  This is a Pleasing Fungus Beetle.  It bears a striking resemblance to Gibbifer californicus, the only species in the genus found in the U.S. according to BugGuide.  We posted a member of the genus from Costa Rica in 2007.  We searched for internet coverage of the genus from Costa Rica, and found a photo of a specimen on the La Anita Rainforest Ranch website that seems to look very similar to your individual, though we believe it is incorrectly identified as Gibbifer californicus.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

graceful brown tropical spider
March 28, 2010
This spider was basking on a leaf in the Manuel Antonio National Park in Costa Rica last summer. It was a little larger than a quarter, including its legs, and didn’t even flinch when I got up-close and personal with my camera. Do you know what kind of spider it is?
costa Rica, Pacific Coast

Six Spotted Fishing Spider, we believe

Hi Jenny,
This sure looks to us like a Six Spotted Fishing Spider, Dolomedes triton.  As we write this, we are not certain if the species ranges to Costa Rica.  We are linking to an image on BugGuide that looks very close.  The Six Spotted Fishing Spider is rarely found far from water, and it is one of the most aquatic members of the genus.  Was there a body of water near where the photo was taken?

Thanks for the quick response!  There was a body of water very nearby.  I found
the spider on a path about 100 yards or so from the Pacific Ocean, and there
are several springs nearby as well.

Calm ponds are the preferred habitat.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination