From the yearly archives: "2016"

Subject: Is this a four tooth mason wasp ?
Location: Montreal (Quebec, Canada)
June 4, 2016 7:56 pm
Hello M. Bugman,
I live in Montréal (Québec, Cananda), south east of the Olympic Stadium. My appartment is on the top floor of a three-story building. I have five hanging flower baskets around my front balcony. This afternoon (June 4, 2016) I picked up my camera to get a picture of what I was convinced was a hummingbird feeding in my hanging flower baskets. The “bird” did not stop flying, going from flower to flower, from one basket to another. It did not buzz like a bee or a wasp, the flight was silent. Looking more closely at the picture it appears to be an insect. After searching on the internet, I suspect it might be a four tooth mason wasp. So far it appears that this type of wasp has not been seen often north of southern Ontario. Despite the lack of clarity of the picture, can you identify this insect ? Thank you for your help.
Signature: Josee Desmeules

Nessus Sphinx

Nessus Sphinx

Dear Josee,
This is one of the diurnal Sphinx Moths in the family Sphingidae, and the species that fly during the day are frequently mistaken for hummingbirds, hence the common name Hummingbird Moth.  We believe your species is the Nessus Sphinx,
Amphion floridensis, which you can find profiled on the Sphingidae of the Americas site.

 

Subject: like a silverfish but bigger?
Location: Vancouver, BC, Canada
June 4, 2016 8:38 pm
Hi,
We found these bugs along the seawall of Stanley Park, in Vancouver, BC, Canada. They came in both brownish and grayish colours, and tended to scuttle off over the wall toward the beach / water when we got near. The only one we got a photo of was actually two bugs, with one on top of the other — they crossed the path in front of us and then went over the wall. They were 2-3 inches long. Online searches make us think they might be a kind of silverfish, but they were much larger than any I’ve ever seen domestically!
Signature: K&M

Sea Slater

Sea Slater

Dear K&M,
This is a marine Isopod in the family Ligiidae, commonly called a Sea Slater.  According to the Electronic Atlas of the Wildlife of British Columbia, it is
Ligia occidentalis, also called “Beach Cockroach; California Sea Slater; Rock Louse; Southern Sea Slater; Western Sea Roach.”

Subject: Black insect with red head
Location: Penang, Malaysia
June 5, 2016 5:22 am
I came across this bug when I was collecting bugs for a school project at a forest trail near a dam. This insect is black with a red head and has long-ish antennas and legs. Its legs and antennas look sectioned, like bamboo. It can fly and bite(has wings and pinchers). I fed it some fruit peel and cooked rice and it seems to be eating the rice. Please help me identify the insect.
Signature: Desperate student

Blister Beetle

Red Headed Blister Beetle

Dear Desperate Student,
We immediately recognized your insect as a Blister Beetle in the family Meloidae, and upon searching for the family in Malaysia, we found images of your species on FlickR, but they are not identified to the species level.  We believe we have successfully identified it as
Epicauta hirticornis thanks to an image of a mating pair on Sinobug.  According to Farangs Gone Wild, it is commonly called the Red Headed Blister Beetle.  Blister Beetles should be handled with extreme caution as they can secrete a compound cantharidin that may cause blistering in human skin.

Subject: What’s this insect?
Location: Saudi Arabia
June 4, 2016 7:05 pm
I want to ask you if this insect can do any harm *I found it on my arm while I’m half sleeping*.
Signature: whatever suits you.

White Weevil

White Weevil

Even before beginning any research, we are confident that this is a Weevil, a Beetle in the family Curculionidae and that it is white.  You provided us with Saudi Arabia as a location, so we had three things with which to begin a web search.  Our first hit was this image of a Pinstriped Ground Weevil, Ammocieonus aschabadensis, on Birds of Saudia Arabia and elsewhere on the site it states:  “This species is common in Saudi Arabia around oasis fringes and on saltflats. They posses a rostrum with jaws situated at the extremity which they use to bore into plant tissue. They normally found on the ground near vegetation although they are sometimes also seen in low vegetation. They have a hard cuticle that protects them from enemies and are very well camouflaged and when threatened roll over on their backs and lash out with their feet which are armed with sharp claws. They are mainly seen between April and August.”  The only other online documentation we could locate is this image on FlickR which is also posted to iNaturalist.

White Weevil

White Weevil

Subject: Wood boring….wasp?
Location: 48108 Ann Arbor, MI
June 3, 2016 10:05 pm
Hello! These guys are making a condominium in my barn. What are they? I am in zone 6b SE Michigan.
Signature: Mary

Mason Wasp drilling nest

Mason Wasp drilling nest

Dear Mary,
We embarked on a relatively lengthy internet search in an attempt to identify your Mason Wasp in the Subfamily Eumeninae, beginning with unsuccessfully scanning through all the genera on BugGuide.  According to BugGuide:  “Most species nest in pre-existing cavities (e.g., old borings in wood, hollow stems, crevices in rocks). They are called mason wasps because they use mud (or less commonly sand) as partitions between their brood cells. Some species construct nests in the ground.”  We then found this great site, Bug of the Week run by Michael J Raupp, Ph.D. that has a wonderful posting of Mason Wasps using pre-existing cavities.  At last we found a very similar looking individual identified as being in the genus
Symmorphus on Bug Eric, the awesome site run by Eric Eaton.  An image on BugGuide of Symmorphus canadensis looks very close to your species, but there is no indication that the females will excavate a nest if they cannot locate a pre-existing cavity.  We will contact Eric Eaton to get his opinion.  We suppose these beams may have been infested with some other boring insect and the holes were quickly appropriated by the Mason Wasps.

Mason Wasp Nests

Mason Wasp Nests

Oh thank you!
There’s a lot of them. They go into the holes, also.

Subject: Insect
Location: San Diego, CA
June 4, 2016 2:53 pm
I found this interesting looking insect the other day… Maybe a type of katydid?
Signature: Elijah Otto

Katydid Molting

Bush Katydid Molting

Dear Elijah,
This is most certainly an immature Katydid, and you have captured it in the process of molting.  We believe this may be a Mexican Bush Katydid nymph based on this BugGuide image, but we would not entirely rule out that it is a Fork Tailed Bush Katydid nymph based on this BugGuide image.  The absence of an ovipositor indicates this is a male Bush Katydid nymph.