From the monthly archives: "March 2013"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Cool bug
Location: Belton, Texas
March 29, 2013 8:01 pm
I found this bug on the rim of a red pot today. It wasn’t too afraid that I was close up to it. It feels like I have looked through every field guide of bugs native to our area and I still can’t find out what this is. Is it non-native? Thank you in advance!
Signature: Caleb J.

Elm Sawfly

Elm Sawfly

Hi Caleb,
This impressive creature is an Elm Sawfly,
Cimbex americana.  Sawflies are non-stinging relatives of Bees and Wasps, and they have larvae that are often confused for caterpillars.  This is a bit early in the season for an Elm Sawfly sighting, but that is not going to stop us from featuring your submission as the Bug of the Month for April.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Garden bug from South Africa
Location: Port Elizabeth, South Africa
March 29, 2013 6:17 am
Hi. I live in Port Elizabeth, South Africa. It is the tail end of summer. I have seen many of the bugs as per attached in the garden. It seems to be around the flowers as opposed to out in the veld. Is it possible for you to let me know what it is?
Sorry about the pins. NO it is not a ”woodoo bug” 😉
Signature: Sam Angell

Scarab Beetle

Scarab Beetle

Hi Sam,
This is a Scarab Beetle in the family Scarabidae, but we did not have any luck matching it to any photos online in our initial attempts.  Those pins are sure distracting.

Hi. Sorry about the pins. He was a bit floppy ……..
Thank you so much for helping me. I rally appreciate that.
Kind regards

Update:  December 29, 2013
We just received a comment indicating that this is a Zig-Zag Fruit Chafer,
Anisorrhina flavomaculata, which we found pictured on ISpot.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Interesting Orange and Black Beetle Found in Ecuaodor and Arizona?
Location: San Clemente Ecuador and also one in Yuma Arizona
March 28, 2013 3:34 pm
Dear Bugman,
I recently sent in a picture of an interesting beetle. In my excitement and haste I didn’t get permission from the photographer. After re-reading the submission page I did send an email to the photographer and got their permission to use the photo to try to identify this odd beetle. I will include the information they have provided about the beetle, and send the information on to them as well because they are very curious about the insect.
My original submission: About 14 years ago I came across this odd beetle. It was Summer time in Yuma Arizona, and we were eating watermelon when this bug flew onto my plate. It was about an inch and a half long. Being 10 it freaked me out and I never did get a picture of it. I never forgot about it though. I tried very hard to identify the bug but never did find out what it was. Today I Googled ”Black and Orange Antennae” and finally found a picture of the bug I saw. So maybe now I can finally put a name to this bug with your help! 🙂
More information on the insect provided by John and Mary from their blog: The bug was found in San Clemente Ecuador. Counting the antennae the beetle was about one and one half inches long. When it was flying around it looked like a large wasp. I tried to get a close up of the head to see the eyes, but it is unclear where the eyes are. There also appears to be some hair-like growth on the face!
Any ideas? Thanks so much for your time and effort.
Signature: Nichole

Longhorned Borer Beetle

Longhorned Borer Beetle

Hi Nichole,
We really doubt that the beetle you saw in Arizona is the same species as the beetle in the photo from Ecuador, but they might be in the same family.  First, thanks for getting permission from John to reproduce his photo.  John’s beetle is a Longhorned Borer Beetle or Longicorn in the family Cerambycidae, and we might be able to identify it to the species level.  There is a better database online for North American species, and while it is impossible to state with any certainty that we can identify the beetle you saw 14 years ago without photo documentation.  A similar looking beetle that is found in Arizona is
Aethecerinus latecinctus which we found on BugGuide.  We will write back if and when we identify the Ecuadorean Longicorn.

Longhorned Borer Beetle

Longhorned Borer Beetle

Karl provides an identification
Hi Daniel and Nichole:
My initial thought was that the Ecuadorian Cerambycid was probably in the genus Trachyderes, many of which look quite similar. Several Trachyderes species are native to Ecuador but none of them are quite right, particularly with regard to the color patterns of the antennae. I believe John’s is probably Andrachides transandinus (Cerambycinae: Trachyderini). The genus appears to have only the one species and it is endemic to Ecuador and Peru. Its similarity to Trachyderes is evident in that its original name was Trachyderes transandinus. As for the beetle from Arizona, I suggest checking out the closely related and similar T. mandibularis which is well represented on bugguide.net.  Regards.  Karl

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: funnel spider???
Location: Brampton, Ontario
March 27, 2013 10:57 am
Dear Bugman,
Thank you so much for your site. I often referrence it to help identify the mysterious critters I come across. This one is a beauty. I’m thinking funnel spider, but her markings are unusual for me. Most of the ones about here are rather plain. I actually found her IN the house last night (sitting atop my tea tin). This morning another dashed inside when I opened the front door. I scooted it back outside (as I already had its friend captured for identification). I went straight to the net to find some info and came across an identical spider pic with no identification ( except one site calling it a yellow sac spider, pfft!!). My camera is not good for insect photos so I won’t bother with sending you a blurred vague image. Here is the pic I found online. If you could help that would be great. I’m gonna let this gal go soon but I’d like to know what to call her next time we cross paths, or when she decides to visit for tea again.
Signature: D.

Eastern Parson Spider

Eastern Parson Spider

Hi D.,
The Eastern Parson Spider, Herpyllus ecclesiasticus, received its common and scientific names, according to BugGuide, because of the reference:  “to the white dorsal stripe on the abdomen, which resembles a cravat worn by a parson or minister during the 1800’s.”
  The Eastern Parson Spider is a Ground Spider, not a Funnel Web Builder.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: What is this insect-Baja California
Location: 8 miles north of town of San Felipe, Baja California, Mexico
March 27, 2013 3:25 pm
We just visited our property in San Felipe, Baja California, Mexico and their were swarms of these bugs all over our property. They didn’t seem harmful. They were snacking on any new green foliage in the desert. I’ve been going down there for several years and have never seen these. They are quite large, maybe an inch and one-half long. Golden wings. Their were some on their own, but mostly on the ground in clusters. I suppose that had to do with the vegetation they were eating. I moved some around and they didn’t try to sting or bite.
Signature: Baja Barb

Iron Cross Blister Beetles

Iron Cross Blister Beetles

Dear Baja Barb,
These are Iron Cross Blister Beetles in the genus
Tegrodera.  There are several species in the genus and we have difficulty distinguishing one from the other.  According to BugGuide:  “species closely related, separable by minor but consistent differences of adult anatomy.”  BugGuide also notes that:  “each sp. associated with different plant communities” and “Eriastrum is an important food source for all adults.”  All Blister Beetles should be handled with care as they are able to secrete a compound known as cantharidin that can cause skin to blister.

Iron Cross Blister Beetle

Iron Cross Blister Beetle

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Found In Mulch
Location: Eastern Virginia
March 27, 2013 7:32 pm
I found this guy in the pile of mulch I was overturning in Norfolk, VA. He was about the size of my thumb, and I’m not a very big person.
Signature: D’Ann

Bess Beetle

Bess Beetle

Hi D’Ann,
This is a Bess Beetle,
Odontotaenius disjunctus.  The Bess Beetle is also called “Bess Bug, Betsy Beetle or Bug, Patent Leather Beetle, Peg Beetle” according to BugGuide.  Bess Beetles are found in rotting logs and they are rather unique among beetles as they care for their young.  Here is the life style description from BugGuide:  “Lifestyle of this family is unique for beetles: live in small colonies where larvae are cared for by adults of both sexes. Long life cycle, apparently more than one year. Larvae eat a rotting wood pre-chewed by adults. (Some references state larvae eat feces of adults as well.) Larvae and adults also cannibalize injured larvae.”

Thank you very much!  More requests to follow as I continue to explore the local area.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination