Subject: Fast on foot and flies
Geographic location of the bug: Eastern TN, US
Time: 12:33 AM EDT
Your letter to the bugman: Hi! Since moving to Eastern TN, we’ve found our new home to be teeming with all sorts of life. Here is one that stood out and which I could not identify. Maybe you can?
How you want your letter signed: Keith
This is a Red Headed Ash Borer, Neoclytus acuminatus, or a closely related species of Longhorned Borer Beetle. All indications are that the color, markings and behavior of the Red Headed Ash Borer mimic that of a stinging wasp, which protects the harmless beetle from potential predators. According to BugGuide: “Larvae feed on the sapwood of ash and other hardwoods, and even occasionally on vines and shrubs. Larvae are common in downed timber with the bark left on.”