From the monthly archives: "October 2013"

California Mantis Relocated to WTB? Garden
Location:  Mount Washington, Los Angeles, California
October 25, 2013
Tuesday night after the MWHA board meeting, Daniel and some fellow board members noticed this female California Mantis in the corner of an alcove with a spider web wrapped around her leg.  The stucco entrapment did not seem the ideal location for her health and welfare, so Daniel transported her home in a film box and released her on the zinnia.  She has been patrolling the garden for prey ever since.

Female California Mantis

Female California Mantis

Subject: Colorful Caterpillars
Location: Quintana Roo, Mexico
October 25, 2013 6:20 am
We saw this cluster of colorful caterpillars hanging on a tree at Coba Mayan Historical Park. Our guide told us they would become ”beautiful butterflies in just a few days.” I’m wondering what they are?
Signature: MS

Caterpillar Aggregation:  Arsenura armida

Caterpillar Aggregation: Arsenura armida

Dear MS,
We have several images in our archives of similar caterpillar aggregations and we have identified them as the caterpillar of a Silkmoth
Arsenura armida, not a butterfly.  Here is an image from Project Noah and a wonderful page with additional information.

Subject: this thing bit me. what the heck is it?
Location: tennessee
October 23, 2013 11:25 am
The attached photos are of the strange creature that bit my leg. I had to pull it off since it had quite the hold. Felt like a bee sting and left a similar mark although with a little blood. I’ve never seen anything like it before.
Signature: kevin

Assassin Bug

Assassin Bug

Hi Kevin,
This is an Assassin Bug, most likely in the genus
Zelus.  Accidental encounters with humans sometimes result in painful bites, but there is no significant lasting effect.

Thanks Daniel.  Someone else told me they thought it might be some type of Seed bug, but the photo in the link you sent me looks identical to the beast that bit me.    Thank you for your quick response.  I can now let folks know that it’s not a Kissing bug and my chances of survival just went up dramatically.
Kevin

Hi again Kevin,
This is most definitely not a Kissing Bug, one of the genera of Assassin Bugs that does pose a health threat to humans.

Thank you for putting my mind at ease

Subject: What is this thing
Location: Riverside, CA, USA
October 24, 2013 8:38 am
We found two of these in two days. One in the entry and one in the laundry room. Curled up in about an inch diameter or less. These things look like some parasite out of a horror flick.
They are really freaking us out. What is it, and where is it living. Doesn’t look like its little legs in front would be any good for moving around on any surfaces, so we are suspecting that one of our animals has some kind of huge disgusting parasite.
Signature: WildermanFamily

Scarab Grub

Scarab Grub

Dear Wilderman Family,
This is the grub of a Scarab Beetle, not a parasite.  They are often found underground when digging in the garden.  We don’t know how they wound up in your laundry room.  Do you have a compost pile nearby.  Perhaps they are Crawlybacks, the larvae of the large Figeaters that are found in Southern California in late summer.

Subject: Strange bug in Menorca
Location: Menorca, Balearics Spain
October 23, 2013 1:24 pm
We found this strange bug which looked a bit like a cross between a grasshopper and a beetle. It measured about 2 1/2 inches in length and had a shield like cover over its head. There are two stinger like things sticking out the back. It was brown in colour. We found it on our patio at 22:00 hrs. I hope you can see it as we only had a torch to light it up for the photo.
Signature: Bug in Menorca

Mole Cricket

Mole Cricket

We love the way your Mole Cricket looks like a dancer in the spotlight.  We just posted another photo of a Mole Cricket from Australia, and we have examples of this subterranean insect from many parts of the world in our archive.

Subject: What is this?
Location: Costa Rica
October 24, 2013 5:21 pm
Hi found it into my closet, what is that?
Signature: Diego

Cancle or Tailless Whipscorpion

Cancle or Tailless Whipscorpion

Dear Diego,
This is a Tailless Whipscorpion.  We understand that the name in Spanish is Cancle.  Though they are related to Scorpions, the Tailless Whipscorpions do not have venom and they are considered harmless.

Hello Daniel, first of all I want to apologize because I just sent a few lines with almost no information, then I saw in your web site that people made a big description about bugs, now thanks to you I know that the little bug in my closet is name Cancle, as I wrote I´m from Costa Rica (tropical and warm place) and this is the first time that I see a bug like that.
One more time thank you very much for your information, great site btw!!!

You are most welcome Diego, and there is no need to apologize.  While it is true that we like to post submissions with as many details as possible, your concise letter did include the information that you found your Tailless Whipscorpion in the closet.  They are shy creatures that often hide during the day, emerging after dark to pursue prey.  Tailless Whipscorpions help to control Cockroach populations when they are permitted to share a home with human inhabitants.