From the monthly archives: "March 2017"

Subject: Caterpillar???
Location: Melbourne, Victoria (Australia)
March 21, 2017 10:36 pm
Me and my sister found this strange caterpillar thing outside. Lately we’ve been having very rainy and humid weather so I don’t know if that caused it’s appearance?
We’d love to know what it is!
Signature: Bridget

Sawfly Larva

Dear Bridget,
This is a Sawfly Larva and it is very easy to confuse a Sawfly Larva for a Caterpillar, but instead of maturing into a butterfly or moth, it will mature into a non-stinging relative of bees and wasps.  We cannot currently access our main “go to” website for Australian identifications, Brisbane Insects, but this does look like a Longtailed Sawfly larva we have in our archives.

Sawfly Larva

Subject: Ginormous 6 legged creature found on beach
Location: Puerto vayarta mexico
March 22, 2017 7:39 pm
We found this dead bug on the beach in Mexico . It’s distinguishing features are
– 6 legs front 2 very long…approx 3.5inches
– pinchers
– super long antennae
– black and yellowish
– upon closer inspection looked like it could fly
– very hard shell
– underneath looked like a cockroach
– body was approximately 2inches
We asked many locals nobody could identify. We are so curious. I researched waterbeetles but nothing had the huge front legs.
Thank you for your help and we look forward to learning what it is!
Signature: Kate

Male Harlequin Beetle

Dear Kate,
This magnificent male Harlequin Beetle,
Acrocinus longimanus, is in the Longicorn family Cerambycidae.  It can fly.

Male Harlequin Beetle

Subject: Beetle
Location: Cuba
March 22, 2017 4:50 am
Please could you help me ID this beetle we found , whilst on holiday in Cuba
Thank you
Signature: Lynne Demaine

Cotton Stainer

Dear Lynne,
This is not a Beetle, but rather a True Bug.  This is a Cotton Stainer in the genus
Dysdercus, and we believe it is Dysdercus sanguinarius based on this En Advisor Travel site.

Dear Daniel
Many thanks  – that is brilliant and so quick too!
The fact it is not a beetle explains why my attempts to ID it failed miserably!
Best wishes

Subject: big black thing
Location: Belgrade, Serbia
March 22, 2017 7:47 am
This just fell from the sky with a loud thump and doesn’t move. I’m 46 and I’ve never seen one.
Signature: Milan Maksimovic

Predaceous Diving Beetle

Dear Milan,
Though this is an aquatic predator, the Predaceous Diving Beetles in the genus
Dysticus, and we believe your individual is in the genus Dysticus, are capable of flying from pond to pond in the event the original pond begins to evaporate.  Here is a BugGuide image for comparison.

Thanks Daniel!
This was far from any still or flowing water, by at least 3-4 miles. It’s possible that some bird picked it up and dropped it since it fell in a straight line from the sky.
Thanks again.

Yes, that is possible.

Ed. Note:  March 22, 2017
We are currently experiencing technical difficulties and we cannot upload any new images.  Please be patient while we research this problem.

Subject: Trapdoor Spider?
Location: North of Tucson, Arizona, USA
March 19, 2017 6:58 pm
She wasn’t too happy to be shoveled out of my garden while I was pulling up weeds and turning soil.
She was clinging to a strip of silk “fabric”, so I’m guessing she’s a trapdoor spider? I’ve never seen one outside one of their holes before.
Signature: Ema

Trapdoor Spider

Dear Ema,
We love digging up critters in the garden.  Earlier this year, we were pulling out weeds and we discovered a California Slender Salamander.  We agree this is a female Trapdoor Spider.  We will attempt to identify the species.  Though the face is not showing on your individual, it resembles this Red Moustached Trapdoor Spider on Arachnoboards.  This might be a member of the genus
Ummidia as pictured on BugGuide.

Subject: Black and White bug on Fig Leaf
Location: Phoenix, Az
March 20, 2017 7:01 pm
Hey there while watering my fig tree I noticed this odd looking black and white bug.
It appeared to be fighting with/ holding a gnat of some kind. In any case the gnat was trying to get away.
Was hoping to identify the bug , any help is appreciated!
Signature: Cait

Aphid Wolf attacks Aphid

Dear Cait,
This is a predatory Lacewing Larva, commonly called an Aphid Wolf, and it has captured an Aphid, not a Gnat.  Aphids are considered significant agricultural pests, and Lacewing Larvae are an effective organic method of controlling the problem without introducing insecticides.