From the monthly archives: "July 2013"

Subject: Beautiful Eyed Elater
Location: Bryn Mawr, PA
July 1, 2013 6:30 am
I was able to identify this beautiful beetle through your website. Thanks for the introduction to the fascinating world of bugs. I am a gardener but don’t usually take the time to figure out who these creatures are sharing my outdoor space. You make it a lot easier to get to know them.
Signature: Pomona Sprout

Eyed Elater

Eyed Elater

Dear Pomona Sprout,
Thank you for your kind remarks and also this marvelous photo of an Eyed Elater.

Subject: Unknown fly
Location: West end of Shebandowan Lake, Ontario
July 1, 2013 6:15 am
I’m pretty sure this is a fly, not a wasp or hornet. It landed on my camera lens hood near Shebandowan Lake in northern Ontario on June 30, 2013. Sunny and warm temperature. It appeared to be eating or licking something (sweat, oils?) off the lens hood. It stayed for at least 30 minutes until I finally nudged it and made it fly away.
Signature: Jeff Robinson

Elm Sawfly

Elm Sawfly

Hi Jeff,
Despite its common name, the Elm Sawfly, Cimbex americana, is a non-stinging relative of bees and wasps and not a true fly.

Subject: what insect is this?
Location: Baltimore County, MD
June 30, 2013 3:58 pm
We live near a pond in Maryland. We have been here for 4 years and have not seen this insect until now. They came out of nowhere and swarmed around the lights and the windows anywhere there was light. What is it? Thanks.
Signature: ravensfan

Stonefly

Stonefly

Dear ravensfan,
This is a female Stonefly in the order Plecoptera, and she is carrying about her egg mass.  Soneflies have aquatic larvae known as naiads, so the nearby pond is likely a factor in the sudden appearance.  Here is a similar photo from BugGuide.  The BugGuide page for the order indicates:  “females deposit several egg masses, which together may total more than 1,000 eggs, by flying over water or occasionally by crawling up to the water; some nymphs are known to molt 12-36 times, and require one to three years to mature; full-grown nymphs leave the water, cling to shoreline vegetation and debris, and molt into the adult stage” and “nymphs of most spp. develop in cool, well-oxygenated water and do not tolerate pollution; therefore, their presence is an indicator of good water quality, and their absence in areas where they previously occurred may indicate pollution.”

Stonefly

Stonefly with eggs

 

Subject: White Fly
Location: Cincinnati, Ohio
June 30, 2013 6:55 pm
I’ve never seen a white fly before, there are some black stripes on it’s back, and big red eyes. I saw it on a tree while walking my dogs in early spring. I tried to find it online, but nothing looked like this. Do you know what it is?
Signature: Emily Rose

Unknown Fly

Root Maggot Fly

Hi again Emily,
We haven’t the time to try to identify this Fly at this time, so we are posting it as unidentified and we hope one of our readers might be able to provide some information.

Instantaneous Update:  Root Maggot Fly
Thanks to Katy for providing an identification and a link to BugGuide and the Root Maggot Fly, Anthomyia oculifera.

Excellent, a community effort! I also posted to fb for identification too, and everyone is stumped so far on this guy.

Subject: Red Beetle with black spots
Location: Cincinnati, Ohio
June 30, 2013 6:57 pm
First thing that came to mind was lady bug, but it’s not similar in shape. Found in Cincinnati in mid-spring.
I live in Cincinnati, OH, and never saw so many different types of insects before, I moved here from cold Minneapolis, MN.
Signature: Emily Rose

Four Spotted Checkered Beetle

Four Spotted Checkered Beetle

Dear Emily Rose,
We quickly dismissed that this might be a Leaf Beetle and we then identified it as a Four Spotted Checkered Beetle,
Pelonides quadripunctatus, thanks to images posted to BugGuide, which indicates the beetles are active:  “March-May.”

Subject: Metallic green with a huge stiner. What is it?
Location: Boise, Idaho
June 30, 2013 9:43 pm
We have found 8 of these so far living in our bedroom. So far only 2 have been alive and the rest have been dead. Being allergic to bee’s and not knowing what these are the two living ones met their maker as well. They are just about impossible to squish it seems and crunch over and over. During this I noticed their stinger is long as can be and was twitching like crazy in and out.
What is this thing and any idea why they are invading our bedroom, or more specific most of them we found are right near out window that has been closed up and what we thought sealed.
If needed I did keep the body of one of the victim and can take some more pictures.
Signature: Tracy

Cuckoo Wasp

Cuckoo Wasp

Dear Tracy,
This is a Cuckoo Wasp in the family Chrysididae.  According to BugGuide:  “Some species are parasitoids and others cleptoparasites. Either way the host larva dies.”  BugGuide elaborates on those term:  “Parasitoids feed on the larva of the host and cleptoparasites ‘steal’ the host’s food. The food-stealing behavior of cleptoparasite species resembles that of the cuckoo bird and gave rise to the cuckoo wasp’s name. Hosts of parasitoid species include bees, sphecid wasps, potter wasps, sawflies, silk moths, and the eggs of stick insects. Cleptoparasitic species feed on provisions of sphecid wasp nests, which may include dead spiders, true bugs, aphids, or thrips.”
  If you have sash windows, you might want to look for the remains of a nest of Leafcutter Bees which often nest in the grooves of sash windows.  Perhaps the nest of the Leafcutter Bee was parasitized by a female Cuckoo Wasp and her progeny emerged.  Since you are so concerned about being stung, you should take note of this information also provided by BugGuide:  “The female sting has been modified into an egg-laying tube with highly reduced valvulae and poison gland. As a result, unlike most other aculeates, chrysidids cannot sting and can be easily handled.”  Most insects found in the home would much rather be outdoors, and the best way to remove them is with a glass and postcard.  First trap the insect in the glass and then slide the postcard underneath the glass and move outside to release.