From the monthly archives: "February 2011"

Camouflaged katydid from Peru
Location: Shima, near Satipo, Junin, Peru
February 27, 2011 5:47 am
This katydid appears to be camouflaged for a lichen environment. It came to a moth light in Junin state, Peru. Can anyone please help me find the species?
Signature: Peter Bruce-Jones


Hi Peter,
Several years ago, we posted a photo of a Moss Mimic Katydid from Costa Rica, and if you look at that posting, you will see some similarities, but we don’t believe this is the same species.  We will try to contact Katydid expert Piotr Naskrecki to see if he can properly identify your species.

Comment from Piotr Naskrecki
Hi Daniel,
This is an almost certainly undescribed species of the tribe Dysonini (Phaneropterinae), possibly Machima sp. It is a very poorly known group of katydids, and virtually nothing is known about their biology, other than their remarkable mimicry of lichens.

What kind of bug???
Location: Northeast
February 26, 2011 11:03 pm
Please help identify this occasional bug. We live in Long Island,N.Y.
Signature: Paul Allocca

Brown Marmorated Stink Bug

Hi Paul,
This is a Brown Marmorated Stink Bug,
Halyomorpha halys, an invasive species native to Asia that is expanding its introduced range in Eastern North America.  We shudder to think that the USPS is behind this range expansion.

Thanks for the help…..I looked it up some more and look pretty harmless as far as being in the house goes.Thanks again.
Thank you,
Paul Allocca

Moth ID
Location: Western New York
February 27, 2011 12:41 am
Hi, I found this moth outside of our house on October 10, 2008. We live in Upstate New York, near Buffalo, NY. He was out in the daylight. Can you identify him? Thank you!
Signature: Dawn

Compton Tortoiseshell

Hi Dawn,
Your butterfly, not moth, is a Compton Tortoiseshell,
Nymphalis vau-album , and it appears as though it might be a dead specimen.  We cannot distinguish its antennae from background, it seems as though they are missing.

Tiny and spider like
Location: South Africa
February 26, 2011 12:35 pm
Hope you can help with an ID for this tiny creature. Body less than 1mm in length. Found it running around on the tiles next to my swimming pool. Runs extremely fast (almost appears to be gliding) in circular patterns and then suddenly stops before taking off again. Seems like it has two white eyes. Must be related to a spider?
Signature: Vida


Hello Vida,
We really want to commend you for taking such detailed photographs of such a tiny creature.  Your creature is some species of Mite in the subclass Acari.
Your observation that it must be related to a spider is correct since both are classified as Arachnids.  We find the taxonomic classification of Mites to be well beyond our means, and we are reluctant to try to be any more specific than the extremely general identification of Mite.  We would like to add again that your very detailed photographs are quite lovely.


Looks like a mantis
Location: Middle Georgia (the state, not the country;)
February 26, 2011 2:52 pm
My boys found this in the bathroom and think it’s a baby mantis. I’m not so sure. It doesn’t have the large head or ”praying hands.” I’m letting them keep it in a bug motel until we identify it. Help!
Signature: Tricia

Immature Assassin Bug

Hi Tricia,
This really looks to us like an immature Assassin Bug in the genus Zelus.  Assassin Bugs are predators so your inclination that it resembles a Mantis has some bearing.  You can read more about Assassin Bugs on BugGuide and you can compare your individual to this image and this image also on BugGuide.

Strange Caterpillar from the woodpile
Location: Northeastern Pensylvania
February 25, 2011 10:26 am
Hi! Firstly, I LOVE wtb, I just found it a few days ago, and I’m practically obsessed with learning about the different kinds of bugs. I’ve always been a bug lover, and this past fall when I was helping my dad stack wood in the woodshed, when I found two awesome bugs in the course of one day. The first is a beetle looking thing, I thought he was just awesome, So I took him inside and snapped some pictures before I let it back on the woodpile. I’ve lived here my whole life and never seen anything like this! It did pinch ahold of my dad when he was poking it (silly man) and apparently it hurt pretty bad. But he just pulled it off and put it back on the wood, laughing at how dumb of an idea it was to poke it. The second little guy came crawling off one of the logs. It made me a little nervous, as I was ”stung” by a big green spiky caterpillar when I was younger, but all in all he was only concerned with munching on the leaf I put in the bowl for him. He was really cool, and I took him inside the house to photograph him, then let him go back were he was on the woodpile. I never saw what he hatched into though. Any idea what this guy is, and what he may have turned into?
Signature: Liz

Bedstraw Hawkmoth Caterpillar

Dear Liz,
Thank you for your highly entertaining and very sweet email.  Your caterpillar is a Bedstraw Hawkmoth Caterpillar or Gallium Sphinx,
Hyles gallii, which we confirmed on the Sphingidae of the Americas website.  There you may read a lengthy account of the caterpillar and adult moth including details of its life cycle.

Thanks! 🙂 Mystery solved!