From the monthly archives: "May 2019"

Subject:  Beetle or Fly
Geographic location of the bug:  Mcminnville,Oregon
Date: 05/18/2019
Time: 03:33 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Our family came across this bug, it was resting on new grounds trail post,near our local woods. We have searched for identical bugs. Nothing has came close to identification. This particular bug did not mind movement or noise as it stayed silent amd still on the fresh wooden post! Maybe a wood beetle? Since the trail post were fresh built, or imported bug on wood the carpenders gathered to build post?! Very interesting.
How you want your letter signed:  To the rasmussen boys

Western Sculptured Pine Borer

Dear Rasmussen Boys,
This looks like a Western Sculptured Pine Borer,
Chalcophora angulicollis, to us.  According to BugGuide:  “Dark brown to black, sculptures on upper side, irridescent bronze luster, especially on underside. Fly noisily when alarmed. The only western species in the genus.

Subject:  Mantis
Geographic location of the bug:  Mount Washington, Los Angeles, California
Date: 05/17/2019
Time: 06:32 PM PDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Dear Bugman,
My Cannabis sprouts are growing, and I just found this tiny Mantis on one of the plants.
How you want your letter signed: Constant Gardener

Mantis hatchling

Dear Constant Gardener,
We appreciate your first submission of 2019 and we eagerly await more documentation of the insects associated with your 2019 crop.

Subject:  Spider wasp and prey
Geographic location of the bug:  Charleston, Illinois
Date: 05/15/2019
Time: 01:11 AM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Saw you were looking for a image of this spider and its prey. Just a cell phone picture but shows key features.
How you want your letter signed:  Christopher S

Spider Wasp and Wolf Spider Prey

Dear Christopher,
Thanks so much for submitting your awesome image of a Spider Wasp,
Entypus unifasciatus, and its Wolf Spider prey.  The Wolf Spider will not be eaten by the Spider Wasp.  She feeds on nectar from flowers, and the paralyzed Wolf Spider will provide fresh food for a larval Spider Wasp which will eat its paralyzed meal alive.

Subject:  Net winged beetle(?) + something
Geographic location of the bug:  Abruzzo, Italy
Date: 05/14/2019
Time: 03:04 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Hi Daniel
Last 2 for a while, if you don’t mind.
First one is, I suspect, a Net winged beetle of the Lycidae family.
The second, I have to admit, has me totally stumped.  It doesn’t appear to be a True Bug, moth or butterfly and cannot find any images of beetles even remotely similar.
Your help would be very gratefully received.
How you want your letter signed:  Fof

Red and Black Froghopper

Dear Fof,
We quickly identified your Red and Black Froghopper,
Cercopis vulnerata, thanks to Alamy and the British Bugs site where it states:  “A truly unmistakable species, and one of our largest homopterans. The nymphs are rarely seen, as they feed on underground roots.”  According to iNaturalist:  “This species is present in most of Europe (Albania, Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, France, Greece, Spain, the former Yugoslavia, Moldova, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Switzerland, Hungary, Great Britain and Italy).”  As with other Hemipterans that have mouths designed to pierce and suck, they might cause wilting of tender stems if they are plentiful, but a greater problem is the spreading of pathogens from plant to plant while they feed, based on what we found on EuroFresh.  We never heard back from you after we identified your Common Picturewing from Vietnam.

Red and Black Froghopper

Subject:  Strange bug
Geographic location of the bug:  Panorama city/van nuys, california
Date: 05/13/2019
Time: 11:48 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Hi! Hoping you can help me?…Im finding TONS of these, strange, “furry”(?) white bugs, in the weeds of my, overgrown, lawn – and, especially, on a, large,thistle plant…and, i cannot seem to find ANYthing like them, online (maybe, im not describing them, correctly?)! At first, i thought they were spiders – but, now, im not sure? They have many, silky/delicate-looking, legs or spines – look, almost, like the top of a dandylion. They move slowly…dont jump or fly…almost, seem to “roll” over the leaves?…and, like to perch in, small, clusters
Is theres ANY way you could get back to me, ASAP?…as, TOMORROW afternoon, the gardener is going to be mowing the yard, and, probabky, cutting down the thistle plant (im trying to ID THAT, too – to see if its native, and, if i should keep it or not?), and…im feeling, real, guilty…because, these bugs seem to like the thistle, so much – and, i may, inadvertantly, be committing a ” bug-genocide”! Hopefully, therell, probably, still, be SOME of them left – and, if so…i, also, need to know IF they bite or are venemous, etc…and, whether i need to keep my dogs away?
Thank you, SO, much!
P.S. i have another photo which shows the body, but, it said i couldnt attach it because i had exceeded the maximum weight (i could send it, seperately, if you need it?)
How you want your letter signed:  Madelaine


Dear Madelaine,
We do not see any insects in your image, but based on your description, we believe you are mistaking airborne seeds like those of a dandelion for insects.  The seeds might be from salsify or some other plant that uses the wind to disperse seeds.  Foodstuff has an image of salsify seeds.  They are most likely thistle seeds.

Subject:  need help with ID
Geographic location of the bug: Westmoreland State Park, in Montross, VA 22520
Date: 05/13/2019
Time: 08:24 AM EDT
Dear Daniel,
I tried to upload this photo to your website, but it appears my computer is “buggy”, ha ha. I found this (I presume) larva on the path of Westmoreland State Park, in Montross, VA 22520, on April 20th. I moved it to the side where it wouldn’t get stepped on. When moving it, it kept trying to dive under the leaf I was trying to move it with, perhaps it was ready to pupate much like Manduca sexta does (I used to work with them). I managed one photo before it burrowed into the leaf litter. It was about three inches in length.
I cannot find anything in my books or on your site. I am hoping you can help me….
Thanks so much for your great website. Sometimes I just browse through to see insects that live in places I’ll never be able to visit.
Regards, Seth

Unknown Beetle Larva

Dear Seth,
Many larval forms of insects are not well documented.  This appears to us to be a Beetle larva.  Perhaps one of our readers will recognize it and write to us.