From the monthly archives: "December 2015"

Subject: What insect is this
Location: Melbourne Victoria
December 21, 2015 6:15 am
Hello
Found this little guy on my bathroom sink. Roughly the same size as an ant. Had a really good look and it appears to be on its own, couldn’t find anymore.
Signature: Anyhow

Aphid Wolf

Aphid Wolf

This is a beneficial Lacewing Larva, commonly called an Aphid Wolf because of the large numbers of harmful garden insects it will consume.  We have gotten numerous reports of folks being bitten by Lacewing Larvae, and though the bite is not considered dangerous, the itchiness does last some time.

Subject: Bug identification
Location: Bedroom
December 20, 2015 11:48 pm
Can you tell me what kind of bug this is thank you
Signature: Steve

Booklouse

Booklouse

Dear Steve,
This is a Booklouse, a common household inhabitant.  You can compare your image to this image on BugGuide.  According to BugGuide, they:  “are now nearly cosmopolitan or otherwise widely spread through agency of man, mostly with stored products.”  According to the Penn State Department of Entomology:  “Booklice, also called psocids, are not true lice. While they resemble lice in size and shape, booklice feed only on fungi or mold. If you find them in grain or other stored food products, it is an indication of high humidity which encourages mold growth. In addition to food products, psocids may be found under wallpaper, in furniture, along the sides of windows or on window sills around potted plants. Booklice do not bite, transmit disease, or damage food or fabric, but they can be very annoying when present in large numbers.”

Subject: Unknown mantis
Location: Fuerteventura
December 20, 2015 12:43 pm
At around 6pm on December 15 2015 in a coastal town called Tuineje in Fuerteventura, me and my boyfriend walked out to the end of a concrete pier to watch the sun set. On a concrete wall we found this beautiful green and white mantis. It stayed there for the half an hour we were there and its only movement was to turn its head and it occasionally began to shake for a few seconds. It seemed very out of place on a pier out in the sea and it was almost as if it was there to watch the sunset! It was probably around 10 cm and had a beautiful ornate pattern of green and white on its back. I was wondering if you could tell me what type of mantis it is as Google doesn’t seem to be able to give a specific name. Thank you very much!
Signature: Louise

Thistle Mantis

Thistle Mantis

Dear Louise,
We have identified your mantis as a Thistle Mantis or Devil’s Flower Mantis,
Blepharopsis mendica, thanks to the Wildlife and Birding Destinations site where it states “It is found in north Africa, the Canary Islands, the southern Med and the Middle East.”  You can also read about the Thistle Mantis on the Keeping Insects website where it states:  “Blepharopsis mendica is a quiet species of praying mantis. They are good at catching flying insects. Relying on its camouflage it waits patiently until an unsuspecting prey comes along. This species is not very aggressive and can be intimidate by large prey. Blepharopsis mendica can show a deimatic display in which it will raise its wings and hold its forearms in a sideways way. In this posture the mantis looks very big and the bright colors on the inside of the forearms is visible. This is meant to scare away predators.”

Thistle Mantis

Thistle Mantis

Subject: Odd bug in the park
Location: Southern Ontario, Canada
December 20, 2015 5:53 am
Dear bug man,
We saw this large insect while walking to school last week, and got our mother to take a picture. It was about two cm long. It was a warm day in December.
Signature: Bug-watching sisters

Oil Beetle

Oil Beetle

Dear Bug-watching Sisters
This is an Oil Beetle, a species of Blister Beetle in the genus
Meloe.

Subject: Cool Beetle
Location: Mexico Baja California Sul
December 19, 2015 11:06 pm
Hi Bugman, just found your site and it is awesome! I think I just identified the Ruby Click Beetle? I found earlier this week. It was huge! Here’s another interesting beetle… Hope you can identify it!
Signature: ~IJ

True Bug

True Bug

Dear IJ,
This is not a beetle.  It is a True Bug in the suborder Heteroptera, and we believe it may be in the family Coreidae, but we have not had any luck pinning down the species.  We may have the family wrong, so we are hoping our readership has better luck with an ID than we have had.

Subject: Who is this dive-bomber?
Location: White Mountains, NH
December 19, 2015 5:30 pm
This fellow has been chasing me around the house for a couple days. He’s a bit over an inch long (two inches including legs), with a hexagonal body — tan with darker brown markings if you can catch him without too much backlighting. He seems to be attracted to bright lights — the glass door in the daytime, electric lights at night. He seems to prefer flying to scurrying, though he’ll walk very slowly across a surface (spent several hours exploring the french doors), and doesn’t remain airborne for more than 10-15 seconds at a time.
Signature: Harassed in New Hampshire

Western Conifer Seed Bug

Western Conifer Seed Bug

Dear Harassed in New Hampshire,
Theoretically, this Western Conifer Seed Bug is not a native species for you in New Hampshire as it is native to the Pacific Northwest, but beginning in the 1960s, there was a significant range expansion which we personally believe is related to increased air travel for Americans.  The Western Conifer Seed Bug can now be found in much of North America and it has been reported from Europe as well.  We can conclude that the European immigration is NOT a natural range expansion.  Western Conifer Seed Bug reports tend to peak in the fall because the insects are fully grown, have developed wings that allow them to fly, and they are seeking to hibernate to escape severe winter conditions.  They seek shelter indoors, just like your individual, and that makes them more visible.  The Western Conifer Seed Bug will not harm you or your home, but if they are numerous, they can be an annoyance.

Daniel, thank you for the identification and additional information!