Subject: Red bug Santa Elena
Geographic location of the bug: Santa Elena Reserve, Costa Rica
Time: 06:57 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman: Been trying to identify this bug I’ve found, but can’t seem to find the right species. I came across this beauty while hiking in the Monteverde Cloud Forest. Could you help me out?
How you want your letter signed: Nick
This sure looks to us like the highly variable Palmetto Weevil or Red Palm Weevil, Rhynchophorus cruentatus, based on this image posted to BugGuide. According to Revolvy: “The adult beetles are relatively large, ranging between two and four centimeters long, and are usually a rusty red colour—but many colour variants exist and have often been classified as different species” and “Weevil larvae can excavate holes in the trunk of a palm trees up to a metre long, thereby weakening and eventually killing the host plant. As a result, the weevil is considered a major pest in palm plantations, including the coconut palm, date palm and oil palm.”