From the daily archives: "Friday, December 6, 2013"

Subject: Beetle
Location: Ft. Pierce, Fl
December 5, 2013 2:46 pm
These bugs are eating my shrub. Do you know what they are?
Signature: Vicki Rumley

Thorn Treehopper Nymphs

Thorn Treehopper Nymphs

Hi Vicki,
These are immature Thorn Treehoppers,
Umbonia crassicornis, and once they mature, they grow wings and can fly.  According to BugGuide:  “Numerous legumes and other ornamental and fruit trees” and “Both young and adults feed on the same trees. Many times both are found together in clusters on branches.”  BugGuide also notes:  “The female actively tends her brood or colony of 15-50 individuals”

Subject: Unknown bug
Location: North Alabama
December 5, 2013 9:35 am
Hello, I found two of these bugs in my house, 11/2013, in north alabama. Our pest control company did not know what the bugs are. They sprayed and I have not seen anymore. Something bit me Sunday night on my finger (picture attached) while I was sleeping. It woke me up hurting and itching, I never saw what had bitten me. It does not hurt or itch now, but I still have the red blister that has a tiny small white spot in the middle of the blister. Please help if possible !!!! Thank you, Patty
Signature: Patty

Assassin Bug Nymphs

Assassin Bug Nymphs

Hi Patty,
These are Assassin Bug nymphs, probably in the genus
Zelus, and they might be responsible for the bite you received.  Though painful, the bite is not considered dangerous.

Bite, possibly from Assassin Bug

Bite, possibly from Assassin Bug

Thank you for the quick response. It is exactly what it was.  I feel a little bit better, but i am still terrified. The two I found, I know are dead, but I never saw the one that bit me and am still not sleeping good. Is it possible that our house could get infested with these creatures? If possible how do we get rid of them?     Thank you so much, Patty Sandy

Hi again Patty,
Assassin Bugs are outdoor creatures that do not infest homes.  We are not sure why you have so many indoors.

 

Subject: hornworm
December 4, 2013 4:28 pm
Found what appears to be a tomato hornworm in Phoenix.  It is really cold outside.  The kids want to keep it and try to observe it mutating into a moth.  We know that it burrows so we need dirt, but what does it eat and does it need water?  We found it in a yard of a friend.  Not sure what to do with him.  Thanks.  L
Signature: Lisa

There are many hornworms, and without a photo, we cannot properly guide you to the proper food plant.  If the caterpillar was found on the ground, it is most likely ready to pupate and the food plant is not necessary.

Thank you so much.  We let him go in hopes he would dig in.  It will be freezing this week and didn’t want him to die.  Thx
I will send you a pic

Possibly Great Ash Sphinx Caterpillar

Possibly Great Ash Sphinx Caterpillar

Hi again Lisa,
There isn’t enough detail in your photo to be certain, but this is not a Tomato Hornworm.  We suspect it might be a Great Ash Sphinx Caterpillar,
Sphinx chersis, and you can compare your photo to the ones posted on Sphingidae of the Americas.

Subject: First Bug to identify, many to come
Location: Tuxtla Guiérrez, Chiapas, México
December 5, 2013 9:12 am
Hi, I was relaxing on my patio yesterday, when this little (?) friend came to a flowerpot no more than a couple meters from me, waited a few moments, and then flew away. I was so amazed by its big hind legs that fortunately, I could take a couple pics.
Thank you for the help!
Signature: Juan

Big Legged Bug

Big Legged Bug

Hi Juan,
You may be amused to learn that your True Bug is in the family Coreidae, and the members are called as Big Legged Bugs.  Though your photo is blurry we suspect it may be a member of the genus
Acanthocephela.  You can get additional information on the genus on BugGuide.

Subject: Large caterpillar in Australia
Location: Sydney, Australia
December 5, 2013 5:17 pm
Hi
We came across this caterpillar today and were hoping you could identify. It was found on the outskirts of a lake north of Sydney in Australia. It was on a path at the time so not sure what it would feed on normally. It was 3 – 4 inches long and the head was the small orange end.
We would be really interested to know what you think
Thanks
Signature: Jason & Jacki

Double Headed Hawkmoth Caterpillar

Double Headed Hawkmoth Caterpillar

Dear Jason and Jacki,
This is a very exciting posting for us.  It is interesting that you noted that the orange end is the head on this Double Headed Hawkmoth Caterpillar,
Coequosa triangularis, which we quickly identified on Butterfly House, which indicates:  “Its real head is an orange conical structure, but on its tail are two large raised black knobs. These look like a pair of large eyes, so that an observer or predator finds it difficult to determine which end is actually the head, hence its common name.”  The Double Headed Hawkmoth is in the family Sphingidae, the Sphinx Moths or Hawkmoths, and most caterpillars in this family are called Hornworms because of a prominent caudal horn.  Your Double Headed Hawkmoth has evolved so that though the horn is absent, the caterpillar possesses a very convincing pair of fake eyes to confuse predators.

Double Headed Hawkmoth Caterpillar

Double Headed Hawkmoth Caterpillar

Hi Daniel,
Many thanks for such a quick response. It is great to know what this amazing looking caterpillar was. Such a privilege to see
Regards
Jason & Jacki Barker

Subject: Moth species
Location: Trinidad
December 5, 2013 8:08 am
Taken Trinidad April 2013. Can you ID it?
Thanks
Robin

Dirphia tarquinia, possibly

Dirphia tarquinia, a rare Trinidad sighting

Dear Robin,
If we are correct, Trinidad is an unreported sighting location for this lovely Hemiluecinid,
Dirphia tarquinia.  We learned that when we identified its ranging in Venezuela on the World’s Largest Saturniidae site, a private site on the internet.  Here is a photo from Kirby Wolfe’s website.  We have written to Bill Oehlke to verify our identification, and we would greatly appreciate it if you would grant him permission to post your photo to his site.

Thanks Daniel,
Yes, it is tarquinia. I have sent an email to Robin, confirming id and  asking for permission to post image.
Bill