Subject: Small, cute, and a lifelong mystery to me
Location: Yucca Valley, California
August 19, 2013 1:05 am
I have been seeing these as long as I can remember first in San Diego and now in the high Mojave desert town of Yucca Valley. I have tried to identify them in the past to no avail probably due to my general cluelessness as to where in the insect world they might fit. Anyway this one decided to take a stroll on my arm tonight and my husband took a picture in hopes I would finally be enlightened. Thank you!
Signature: Claire Mojave
Dear Claire Mojave,
This is a primitive insect in the order Embiidina known as a Webspinner. According to BugGuide, they can be identified as being: “slender, usually brownish insects that may have wings (males) or be wingless (some males and all females); body of male flattened; body of female and immature more cylindrical; tarsi 3-segmented; basal segment of front tarsus greatly enlarged for producing silk from hollow hairs issuing on the basal and middle segments; cerci 2-segmented (but left cercus of some males 1-segmented).”