Subject: Whats that bug?
Location: Kalgoorlie, WA
January 14, 2013 11:06 am
I wondered if you would be able to help identify this bug? I found it 14/1/13 in my back yard in Kalgoorlie, Western Australia. It’s body was about 2-2.5 ins long, it looks like a cockroach, but i’m really not sure. Thanks!
Signature: Jenny, Kalgoorlie, WA
You were very astute to recognize this as a Cockroach since it is considerably more colorful than most Cockroaches that people are familiar with. We quickly identified it as a Bush Cockroach, Polyzosteria mitchelli, on the Esperance Blog. We try our best to find credible verification of identifications that we discover on blogs, and BioLib as well as the Agriculture of Western Australia websites confirmed that identification. Esperance Fauna refers to this species as the Mardi Gras Cockroach and indicates: “… Polyzosteria mitchelli would have to be one of the most striking with its brilliant color combination. It is mainly recorded from the semi-arid areas of WA, SA and NSW, where always a delight to encounter. I have found it (usually on shrubby vegetation) from coastal heath to inland mallee flora, including saltlakes and granite outcrops, so although not common, it is very widespread. Growing to 5 cm (2”) in length, it is quite stout and not very fast when compared to the troublesome introduced species that commonly invade houses. The local forms have a bronze background colouration, but apparently metallic green shades have been found in SA.” Thank you for supplying us with a marvelous addition to our What’s That Bug? Downunder tag.