From the monthly archives: "July 2012"

Subject: Unknown beetle
Location: Avalon Pinensula of Newfoundland
July 30, 2012 7:24 am
My friend found this over the weekend and was wondering what type of beetle it is. When she found it she said it looked to be borrowing through some wood. I think she is afraid of any damage that it may cause.
Signature: Curious Friend.

Red Shouldered Pine Borer

Dear Curious Friend,
Using BugGuide, we identified this Longhorned Borer Beetle as a Red Shouldered Pine Borer,
Stictoleptura canadensis, and it is one of the Flower Longhorns in the subfamily Lepturinae.   Adults feed on nectar and pollen and the larvae are wood borers.  Your friend does not need to worry about damage to her home.  According to the family page on BugGuide:  “Most species feed within dead, dying or even decaying wood, but some taxa can use living plant tissue.”

Subject: What is the black & red bug?
Location: The Great Marsh, Beverly Shores, IN
July 28, 2012 11:29 pm
Hi, I like walking through the Great Marsh in Beverly Shores, IN. It is part of the Indiana Dunes National Lake Shore.
I came across a Pearly Wood Nymph which I thought was fascinating. I have included pictures of that. But my question is about the black and red, feathery looking bug. I found it in the Marsh as well. I have never seen another of either bug since then. Thank you.
Signature: Janet baines

Grapeleaf Skeletonizer

Hi Janet,
The insect you would like identified is a Grapeleaf Skeletonizer Moth,
Harrisina americana.  According to BugGuide, the adults are nectar feeders and they are unusual in that they are both nocturnal and diurnal.  Caterpillarsfeed in groups on the leaves of grapes, eating them to the veins.  The Pearly Wood Nymph does an excellent job of mimicking bird droppings.

Pearly Wood Nymph

Thank you so much. I am so glad to have discovered this site.


Subject: What is this bug/caterpillar living on Mesquite Tree?
Location: North Texas
July 29, 2012 11:57 am
There’s multiple bugs of this kind all over a growing mesquite tree. I’m not sure if it’s a caterpillar or what. Whenever we touch it with a stick it has what looks to be two tongues that come out of its head. Then I start smelling something. I don’t know if that smell comes from the bug. It’s summer here in the Northern part of Texas.
Signature: Robert

Giant Swallowtail Caterpillar

Hi Robert,
This caterpillar is aGiant Swallowtail Caterpillar and it will eventually metamorphose into a beautiful adult Giant Swallowtail.  Giant Swallowtail Caterpillars are frequently found feeding on the leaves of orange trees, giving the caterpillars the common name Orange Dog.  The tongue you mention is a scent organ called an osmeterium and it functions to discourage predators by releasing a smell that could be described as unpleasant.  We were confused by your claim that these caterpillars are feeding on mesquite, and the plant in your photo does not resemble mesquite which you can view on Desert USA.  We learned on BugGuide that Giant Swallowtail caterpillars feed on the leaves of Prickly Ash, and upon doing some research, we found photos of Prickly Ash
on the North Carolina Wildflowers, Shrubs & Trees website, and they appear to match the plant in your photo.  We believe your caterpillars are feeding on Prickly Ash, not Mesquite.

Subject: what is it?
Location: Jersey City, NJ 07306
July 28, 2012 6:03 pm
Signature: Hector

Ebony Bug

Hi Hector,
Formerly known as a Negro Bug, the more politically correct Ebony Bug has become the more accepted common name for insects in the family Thyreocoridae.  They are also sometimes simply called Black Bugs.  According to BugGuide, they are:  “Shiny black, broad oval, convex shape. Tibiae have no spines or slender ones. Large scutellum covers most of abdomen and wings. Look like beetles but have 5-segmented antennae and 4-segmented beak.”  BugGuide also notes:  “Common on flowers and other vegetation” and they will not harmful to your home.

Correction:  July 24, 2017
Upon posting a new image of what we believe to be an immature Burrowing Bug, we are rethinking this old posting and we now believe, based on this BugGuide image, that this too is an immature Burrowing Bug.  The BugGuide  description is “body usually ovoid, heavily sclerotized, dark, legs often spiny.” 

Subject: Any help
Location: stuttgart, germany
July 28, 2012 11:48 am
any idea what kind of bug this is. its a fly, but it puts its wings upright and walks around…
Signature: jesse

Peacock Fly

Hi Jesse,
We have not had any luck with an identification, however, we are filing this under Fruit Flies because that is where we believe it belongs.

Peacock Fly

Update:  July 28, 2012
No sooner had we posted this than Jacob H. wrote in with a comment inquiring if it might be
Callopistromyia annulipes, the Peacock Fly, one of the Picture Winged Flies.  An image on BugGuide confirms that identification.  BugGuide also confirms:  “recently found in Europe.”  Picture Winged Flies resemble Fruit Flies.

Hello Mr Marlos,
Thanks for the answer, never seen a flying bug put its wing straight up..


Subject: Is this a fishing spider?
Location: Plains GA, Southwest GA
July 28, 2012 1:01 pm
I was cleaning out a tool shed and this little spider came running out from under some car ramps I picked up. Gave me quit the startle as s/he is very fast. It can also jump somewhere between 1 to 2 feet from what I witnessed. It was about 3 inches long and 2 inches wide. Could you confirm this is fishing spider? If so, what do they eat and such?
Signature: Thanks, Anthony

White Banded Fishing Spider

Hi Anthony,
While we find all Fishing Spiders beautiful, the White Banded Fishing Spider,
Dolomedes albineus, like the individual in your photograph, is the one we personally find the most beautiful.  Fishing Spiders will eat insects, other spiders and small vertebrates if they can catch them.  Those species that are found close to water are capable of catching small fish, tadpoles and other aquatic creatures.  The White Banded Fishing Spider is not one of the species that is typically found close to water.  BugGuide provides very little specific information on the White Banded Fishing Spider.