From the yearly archives: "2010"

Praying Mantis laying eggs
January 10, 2010
Dear what’s that bug,
my best wishes for the New Year in order to continue your great job. I found this adult female praying mantis at 25th of December 2009.

Unknown Preying Mantis

 Preying Mantis

Its length is approximately 2cm (0.79inch) and it gave birth at 5th of January 2010. Except of the identification, is it possible to tell me for how long will it live and around what season will the eggs hatch? Are there any special conditions that I should preserve the eggs? Many thanks for your life saving assistance…
Praying Mantis laying eggs
Southern Greece, Northwest of the island of Crete, Municipality of Chania, Kastelli

Mantis laying Ootheca

Mantis laying Ootheca

We are uncertain of the species, and we spent a bit of time trying to research Greek mantises.  This is a small mantis, and we hope one of our readers can supply a species identification.  In colder climates, the ootheca or egg case passes the winter and hatches in the spring.  In milder climates, we would expect the ootheca to take several months to hatch.  You do not need to give the ootheca any special care.  Your photos are very nice.

Unknown Preying Mantis

Preying Mantis

Karl delivers an identification
Hi Daniel:
There are at least two species of tiny mantids in the region, the common European dwarf mantis (Ameles spallanzania) and the much rarer Geomantie larvoides. Both are less than 3 cm in size and both show considerable color variation. However, G. larvoides has round eyes and is completely wingless in both sexes, while A. spallanzania has more typically conical eyes and only the females are flightless, although they do retain small vestigial wings. The wide upturned female abdomen is also notable for A. spallanzania. Therefore, I think this is likely a species of Amelas, quite possibly A. spallanzania. Regards.
Karl

Type of bug needs I.D.
January 9, 2010
Just found this bug with an aquarium order I received this week. Found it in a tank with some guppies. I really have no idea what it is or how it came to be. I would appreciate it if you could identify it.
Scott
PA

Water Scorpion

Water Scorpion

Hi Scott,
This is a Water Scorpion in the genus Ranatra and there is information on BugGuide.  Water Scorpions are predatory True Bugs and they will eat the guppies, so you should not keep it in the tank.  Prey is captured in the raptorial front legs and the sucking mouthparts will drain the prey of its fluids.  The Water Scorpion may have been introduced on plants.  Water Scorpions, like many other aquatic insects, can make interesting pets, but as they can fly, you should keep the tank covered.  Interestingly, we have a section in the book manuscript we are writing entitled “What’s That in the Aquarium” that is devoted to aquatic insects sometimes encountered by the aquarist.

What’s this Wasp-like thing?
January 9, 2010
For the last month or so I’ve been finding these wasp-like insects around my house. It’s dead of winter. It’s freezing outside. An Orkin guy came out and he had no idea what it was, why it was awake, where it was coming from or how it could be stopped! He thought maybe it was an extremely young wasp but really didn’t know. They are awake though just barely. I put one in my freezer to make sure I had one to show the Orkin guy and when I took it out the next day it came back to life. I’m not sure whether or not it’s something I should even be worried about.
Help!
Southern New Jersey

Red Headed Ash Borer

Red Headed Ash Borer

Dear Help!,
This beetle is a Red Headed Ash Borer, Neoclytus acuminatus.  Its coloration does mimic that of a wasp for protection.  If you have firewood in the house, the beetles are probably emerging from the wood pile.  Though the larvae bore in wood, they are not interested in treated wood used in home building or in furniture, so you need not fear that they are infesting the house.  Again, we believe the heat of the home is causing them to emerge from some recently introduced wood supply.  You may read more on BugGuide.

Thank you so much for your quick response.  I am very relieved to find out that they are not wasps, just harmless beetles.  I figured out where they were coming from thanks to your clues, but they were not coming from the typical source you mentioned, not firewood, but instead from a natural wood perch we purchased for our iguana cage.  I can see small holes that look like they were drilled out where the beetles were coming from.  I really thought that they were some kind of bee or wasp since we had also been finding some dead bees in our house in the last few months….
Thanks again for your help.  Your website is very interesting.
Karen

Found this bug in my florida house
January 9, 2010
Found this is the house. What bug is this? Black with Red/organge striped wings.
thanks for help
New port richey fl

Two Lined Spittlebug

Two Lined Spittlebug

This is a Two Lined Spittlebug, Prosapia bicincta, a common garden insect that feeds on grasses and holly.  It will not damage your home and is not dangerous to humans or pets.  It probably accidentally came indoors from the yard.

crucifix window bug
January 9, 2010
Hi Bugman, Today we found this interesting looking creature parked on our window, in San Rafael, CA. It seems as if it has horns on the end of its ‘wings’. My friend calls it a ‘blood sucking satan fly’ but I don’t think such a thing exist. Another friend thought it was a reincarnation of Jesus on the crucifix. Sorry for the bad photograph, I was afraid to get closer / it biting me.
thanks in advance, jasmine
san rafael, ca, usa

Morning Glory Plume Moth

Morning Glory Plume Moth

Hi Jasmine,
This is a Morning Glory Plume Moth, Emmelina monodactyla, and despite your friends’ theories, it is neither a maleficent nor a divinely benevolent species.  It will not suck your blood, nor is it representative of a miraculous event.  Many people call it a T Bug or T Moth.  It is a European species that was introduced to North America and it has spread from coast to coast.  The UK Moths website has some good information, including:  “One of the commonest of the ‘Plume’ moths all over Britain, and one of the few to be found in the early part of the year, as the adults occur in all months.  Like most of the Pterophoridae, the wings are cleft or divided, but this can be difficult to see, as the moth often rests with the wings rolled up tightly. The wing colour is usually pale brownish, but can be darker. Each pair of spurs on the hind legs has one spur longer than the other. The abdomen has a pale buff dorsal longitudinal band with brown streaks along the midline.  It occurs in any suitable habitat where the larval foodplants, bindweeds (Convolvulus and Calystegia spp.), occur. Larvae have also been reported occasionally on Morning glory (Ipomoea), Chenopodium spp. and Atriplex spp. They feed in two overlapping generations on leaves and flowers from late May to September.

Wow, this is AMAZING!!
thank you so much for clearing up the mystery!

What is this bug?
January 10, 2010
I found it in the garden under a flowerpot , I think it was eating a very small white root, i think its some kind of larva, since it had legs only on the front side of the body.
Stevan Kolarski
Serbia, Vojvodina, Deliblato

Caterpillar Hunter

Caterpillar Hunter

Dear Stevan,
This is a Ground Beetle Larva, probably a Caterpillar Hunter in the genus Calosoma.  You may compare your specimen to these images posted to BugGuide of a North American species.  Your larva may be Calosoma sycophanta, a European species that was introduced to North America in 1905 to help control the introduced Gypsy Moth.  It is also pictured on BugGuide as an adult.

Caterpillar Hunter

Caterpillar Hunter