From the monthly archives: "September 2012"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Aetalionid treehoppers
Location: Jaraguá, São Paulo, Brazil
September 3, 2012 10:49 am
I have lots of this bugs and I thought I could call them leafhoppers, but now I think I correct identified them as aetalionid treehoppers Aetalion reticulatum. The plant where they’re feeding is Cajanus cajan, the same as the membracid treehoppers you identified for me.
I registered a couple producing that substance. The picture where we can see lots of nymphs was taken four months later (that was not the time they hatch). I can say that this nymphs seem to be very very aggressive, it seems that they never leave the place where they was born but, if you hold the tip of the branch, they all come in the direction of your hand!
Signature: Cesar Crash

Aetalionid Treehoppers laying eggs and attracting an Ant

Hi Cesar,
Thank you for sending in your wonderful photos of
Aetalion reticulatum.  We believe the first image with two individuals and an ant represents two females laying eggs.  We believe the frothy substance is a mass of eggs with some protective secretion.  We also believe the Treehoppers must release honeydew which attracts the ants.  We verified our second theory thanks to the American Insects page on the species where it states:  “Aetalion reticulatum is often tended by ants (see photo below) or stingless bees.  The specific epithet refers to the net-like pattern of veins on the forewing.”  Beetles in the Bush has this comment on a similar photo:  “The individual pictured here is a female and she is guarding her egg mass. Females lay clutches of up to 100 eggs, which are covered in a viscous secretion.”

Aetalionid Treehopper nymphs and Ants

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Mating Dance of Orchard Spiders
Location: Near the Maury River in Glasgow, Virginia, Rockbridge County.
September 3, 2012 9:06 am
Hello,
I took these shots this past summer in a field near Glasgow, Virginia.
I have ID’ed them as stated above.
I saw the female (greenish color) cast off her old exoskeleton earlier that morning.
I spent the better part of several hours watching them go about the business of mating, and took many photographs.
Signature: Georgepat

Mating Orchard Spiders

Hi Georgepat,
Orchard Spiders,
Leucauge venusta, are harmless and beautiful spiders.  Your series of photos documenting the courtship process are quite nice and a wonderful addition to our Bug Love archives.  It should be noted that the coloration is not a clear indication of sex in the Orchard Spider.  The male has the more prominent pedipalps, a pair of extremities that are positioned close to the mandibles, slightly in front of the first pair of true legs.  More information on the Orchard Spider is available on BugGuide.

Mating Orchard Spiders

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Xylocopa virginica – Eastern Carpenter Bee (female?)
Location: Naperville, IL
September 1, 2012 9:40 pm
Hi Daniel~
I have dozens of these large bees visiting the butterfly bushes at my house. I have tried to get a good, clear photo of one for several weeks, but they’ve always got their faces in the flowers, and they don’t linger in any one location for very long, so my shots were always blurry, despite bright, sunny mornings. By bumping up the ISO, I was able to minimize motion blur yet still get good enough depth of field for the photo. And I finally confirmed that these are not bumble bees, but solitary carpenter bees. I read that males have whitish faces, but since I see only the back-faced variety, I am wondering if I am looking at it in the wrong way. I hope you have a lovely Labor Day weekend.
Signature: -Dori Eldridge

Eastern Carpenter Bee

Hi Dori,
Your efforts paid off.  We agree that this is an Eastern Carpenter Bee.  Since your photo does not show the individual head on, we are relying on your observations that the face is black, though it does appear to be black in the photo as well.  BugGuide provides some nice information on the Eastern Carpenter Bee, including:  “Nests (galleries) are built in dry, standing wood. Conifers are preferred. Eggs are laid on masses of pollen and nectar, several (6-8) to a gallery. One generation per year in most of range. Adults emerge in late summer, overwinter, mate and nest in spring. Perhaps two generations per year in Florida.”

Thank you, Daniel! I thought I sent a second, full-face photo of the carpenter bee, but I mustn’t have. My bushes are teeming with them now – late summer emergence. Luckily, they don’t appear to be drilling into my wooden siding. We had an exciting day here yesterday. A wooly bear caterpillar we found in our garage several weeks ago and kept as a “pet” was a bit overdue in emerging from its cocoon. I had been checking it daily, and yesterday when I lifted the mesh screen door of its box, I immediately saw a tiny exit hole in the cocoon, but no Isabella Tiger Moth. Instead, there was a guilty, but pretty nonetheless, red-eyed tachinid fly.  They seem well represented on whatsthatbug.com, so I won’t bother you with photos, but I did identify it as Leschenaultia bicolor, and in all my years rearing Monarchs, I have never heretofore come across one of these parasitoid flies. It was quite a surprise.
All the best to you,
-Dori Eldridge

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Potato Bugs in Spanish
September 2, 2012 2:05 am
I just read your posts about the Potato Bug (I have encountered my share of them as well), and I noticed you say that in Spanish they are named “Niña de la Tierra”.
I’m not sure in other Spanish-speaking areas, but in central Mexico these bugs are called “Mestizo” (Half-breed) or “Cara de niño” (Literally, “face of a child”, I guess it would translate as “child-faced bug”). I’ve never heard anyone calling them “Niña de la tierra”.
Good night!
Signature: Liveswithspiders

Potato Bug photo from our archives

Dear Liveswithspiders,
Thanks for providing this valuable information on one of our Top Ten identification requests, the Potato Bug.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: House Centipede food chain
Location: near Madison, WI
September 2, 2012 2:39 am
Something slithery and oddly shaped caught my eye this evening. It turned out to be a large house centipede dragging a moth across our shed wall. I thought you might want a photo for your food chain section.
Signature: Sherrán

House Centipede eats Moth

Dear Sherrán,
Your Food Chain image of a House Centipede eating a Moth is an excellent addition to our website.  We are always happy to receive photos of living House Centipedes as they are so frequently the subject of Unnecessary Carnage images.  We also like to lobby for the preservation of the somewhat frightening House Centipede within homes as they help to eliminate unwanted nocturnal foraging insects like cockroaches.  We have discovered that House Centipedes will often come to a light source at night to feast on the other insects that are attracted to the lights.

Thanks very much.   I’m delighted to be able to contribute to such a great website.
I have a strict no-kill policy at my house, so you may rest assured that no house centipedes (or other bugs) have been harmed here.
Sherrán

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: What kind of insect is this?
Location: Chino Valley, Arizona
September 2, 2012 10:30 am
Hello bug expert,
I live in Chino Valley, Arizona which is 25 miles north of Prescott in North Central Arizona. Elevation 4800’. Photo taken in late August. These bugs are crawling on the ground but appear to have undeveloped wings. They suddenly appeared in numbers of approximately 1 in a radius of 20’. They are approximately 1” long.
Signature: Roger Eads

Blister Beetle

Hi Roger,
This is a Blister Beetle in the genus
Megetra, and according to BugGuide, the genus is:  “Restricted to Chihuahuan Desert of the USA (TX, NM, and extreme southeastern AZ) and Mexico (where most of this desert region is located).”

Blister Beetle

Thanks Daniel,
I have seen blister beetles but never like this.  These have a bulbous wasp-like abdomen.  The blister beetles I’ve seen are flat.  These show up every year in August during the monsoons and disappear within a month.
I don’t like the thought of blister beetles because we have horses.
Thanks again,
Roger

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination