From the monthly archives: "December 2011"

What is This?
Location: Glenview, IL
November 7, 2011 4:29 pm
Found these bugs on the outside of paper bags of wheat in our basement
Signature: Brittany Priz


Hi Brittany,
You have Booklice tiny insects that are often found in homes, especially damp cellars and garages.  According to Charles Hogue in his wonderful book Insects of the Los Angeles Basin:  “The most common is the true Book Louse (Liposcelis bostrychophila), a cosmopolitan pest for the food industry, households, museums, and libraries.  Although it is a contributor to the allergens found in house dust and its feeding may do minor damage to book bindings and paper, the presence of the Book Louse is usually no more than an annoyance.  Out of doors, this species lives on woody vegetation, on fungi in gournd litter, in soil, or in animal nests.”
  See BugGuide for additional photos.


Is this a cockroach??
Location: Cary, NC
November 7, 2011 7:28 pm
We have been finding these small (maybe 1/2 inch?) bugs that look like baby cockroaches to me (horrifying!!). But they don’t actually look like anything I can find online. I want to make sure they’re just outside roaches that wandered in and not the start of an infestation! We have found them everywhere from the linen closet to the sink to the guest room to the bathroom etc.
Signature: Terriifed of bugs!

Smoky Brown Cockroach Nymph

Dear Terriifed of bugs!,
We believe this is an immature Smoky Brown Cockroach,
Periplaneta fuliginosa, and you can find additional photos on BugGuide.  We have read that the adults fly and can enter homes, though we are not certain if this is a species that regularly infests human domiciles.  We tend to think of it as an occasional visitor, though we might be wrong. 

Thank you so much!  I was not able to find a picture of anything similar before but the bug guide has an exact match!!!  I am not thrilled that it IS a cockroach but I am thrilled to know what it is.
Thanks again!

Local Lepidoptera: Butterflies and Moths of the L.A. Region with Daniel Marlos
When Sat, February 25, 2012, 1:30pm – 3:30pm
Where Theodore Payne Foundation, 10459 Tuxford St., Sun Valley CA 91352
Description This illustrated overview of butterflies and moths that frequent our local gardens and wild lands includes images of both adult and larval stages, as well as interesting facts on their habits and food preferences. Daniel is an artist and photographer and the author of The Curious World of Bugs: The Bugman’s Guide to the Mysterious and Remarkable Lives of Things That Crawl. The program includes an exploration of Daniel’s popular website,​m, and ends with a book-signing. Location: Education Center.
Fee: $20 Theodore Payne members, $25 non-members
To register, call 818 768-1802.

Thanks and Happy Winter Solstice! – Lili
Lili Singer
Director of Special Projects and Adult Education
Theodore Payne Foundation for Wild Flowers & Native Plants, Inc.
10459 Tuxford Street, Sun Valley, CA 91352
818 768-1802
[email protected]

Mourning Cloak: Winter Butterfly

Congo, Kinshasa spiked and yellow banded caterpilalr and pupa
Location: Kinshasa, Congo
December 22, 2011 4:06 pm
Mr. Bugman,
Can you please help us ID the caterpillar and pupa in the following photographs from Kinshasa, Congo ?
Signature: Katy and her dad

Large-spotted Acraea Caterpillar from the Congo

Dear Katy and her dad,
Can you confirm if the caterpillar pictured metamorphosed into the attached chrysalis, or if they are different species?  We will contact Keith Wolfe to see if he is able to identify this species which we believe is a member of the Brush Footed Butterfly family Nymphalidae.

Two views of a Large-spotted Acraea Chrysalis

We are not completely sure that they are the same but the chrysalis
was in the same place we left the caterpillar 3 days prior.  Katy’s
mom says she thinks she saw it already attached  there in yellow form.
Thanks for your help!

Keith Wolfe responds.
Dear Katy, Dad (plus Mom), and Daniel,
This is the larva and pupa of the Large-spotted Acraea, Acraea zetes.  I will write more after returning home tomorrow.  Merry Christmas!
Best wishes,

Daniel and Kieth,
Thanks much for the ID and Merry Christmas.
Katy and her mom and dad.

Keith Wolfe elaborates:
December 28, 2011
Hello again Katy, Dad, and Daniel,
Yes, with luck, your chrysalis will metamorphose into Acraea zetes (; here’s the same caterpillar from Gabon —[email protected]/455607804/.  However, with something like 135 species of Acraea recorded from the DRC, most of whose immature stages are unknown, it’s entirely possible that my long-distance ID is wrong.  Thus, please let us know the outcome, preferably showing the resulting butterfly to a local authority or carefully comparing it to a reliable reference.  Disclaimer: the hyperlink appearing in my initial response was inserted by the ever-helpful Bugman.
Cheers from a chilly California,

Thanks again for sharing your wealth of knowledge with us!!  We brought the chrysalis into the house with hopes to see it emerge and if lucky, document the event as it occurs.  At the very least we will get pictures of the emergent butterfly before releasing it .
Stay warm and Happy New Year to you both.
Katy and her dad.

UPDATE:  December 29, 2011
Daniel and Keith,
We got emergence !  Unfortunately no one was home when it happened to get pictures of the process but we got pictures of the butterfly here :
Does it look like Acraea zetes after all ?

Acraea Chrysalis prior to emergence

Daniel and Keith,
We were lucky to find the butterfly after emerging yesterday.  Unfortunately everyone was out of the house when the event occurred sometime between noon and 4pm.   You can see pictures of the chrysalis that morning and the butterfly in the series created here.  I hope species confirmation can be made with picture of the butterfly form.
Thanks again.

Newly Metamorphosed Acraea

Dear Katy and her dad,
We would love to include the emerged imago on our site, however, we would like to request that you attach the images to your response as it is not possible to grab the images from Flickriver.

Newly Metamorphosed Acraea species

Please find images attached

Large Spotted Acraea or closely related species from the Congo

Dear Katy and her Dad,
We are thrilled to get your new photos for our website.  In addition to creating an addendum to your December 22 submission of the Acraea Caterpillar and Chrysalis, we will be creating a brand new posting that links to the original.

Longhorm Weevil?
Location: South-East Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
November 12, 2011 8:56 pm
Dear BugTeam,
Thank you for such a wonderful site: I often spend hours browsing all the different insects from around the world. 🙂
I was wondering if you would be able to help me identify this beetle I found on my washing this (mild November) morning. It looks like a weevil, but the antennae have me stumped: I’ve never seen a weevil with such long, furry antennae before.
Many thanks for your help,
Signature: Jen


Dear Jen,
This is some species of Longicorn or Longhorned Borer Beetle in the family Cerambycidae.  It appears to be posing on a fingertip, which would imply that it is quite small.  We are having trouble finding a species identification.  Your mention of the furry antennae is noteworthy.  Though tufted antennae are not rare among Longicorns, they are often a distinguishing feature.  We could not find an exact match on the Brisbane Insect website, however, there is one example identified as belonging to the genus
Pentacosmia that looks similar to your beetle.  Perhaps one of our readers will be able to assist us in this identification.

Unknown Longicorn