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What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Beautiful assassin
Geographic location of the bug:  Southern Utah
Date: 02/08/2020
Time: 07:20 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Found this beauty in my garage and looking for second opinions as to the ID.
How you want your letter signed:  Jason

Assassin Bug:  Fitchia spinosula

Dear Jason,
We believe we have correctly identified your Assassin Bug as
Fitchia spinosula based on this BugGuide image.  Because it does not have developed wings, we originally thought this was an immature individual, but according to BugGuide:  “Micropterous individuals are more common, although macropterous forms do exist. Macroptery is more common in males than females.”  According to Merriam-Webster, micropterous means “having small or rudimentary wings.”

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Blue robber fly?
Geographic location of the bug:  Mudgee, nsw
Date: 01/01/2020
Time: 03:20 AM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  I saw anothe post with a very similar fly and you said it was an exciting find, so I thought I’d send you mine. Never seen one before, I assume it’s come to escape the fires.
How you want your letter signed:  Cheers, Jeremy.

Giant Blue Robber Fly

Dear Jeremy,
We always love posting excellent images of large Robber Flies, arguably among the most adept winged insect predators.  We believe you are correct that this is a Giant Blue Robber Fly,
Blepharotes spendidissimus, based on images posted online.  The human finger for scale is a nice addition.  We are well aware of the horrific fires currently burning in Australia.

Giant Blue Robber Fly

Giant Blue Robber Fly

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Moth
Geographic location of the bug:  Manaus Brazil
Date: 12/09/2019
Time: 07:51 AM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Hi! Hope you´re still in buisnes. I received some help from you 2016.
No 1 This Moth was photographed in Manaus Brazil 2019-10-03, in the graden of hotel Tropic(al). I have come as far as “it is probably” a Notodontidae.
No 2: This butterfly was photographed on a forest road along Rio Aripuana, about 450 km upstream from Manaus 2019-10-06. Is this really a Merpesia?
No 3: Photographed along Rio Arapuana Brazil 2019-10-10 in forest flooded 6 months a year. Fuligoridae family. I have more photos of this creature, but this is the clarest one. Is it possible to get any further? (- Would love it).
Best regards
Stefan
How you want your letter signed:  Stefan

Mania Moth

Dear Stefan,
We are going to attempt to handle your identification requests one at a time.  Your second image is actually a moth, not a butterfly.  We are confident it is a Mania Moth,
Mania empedocles, from the family Sematuridae which we identified on Project Noah.  The species is also pictured on iNaturalist.  According to a FlickR posting:  “Mainly, the family is made of nocturnal and crepuscular individuals. There are 35 species in the family Sematuridae; a single genus with one species occurs in Africa (as far as my knowledge goes, so this requires confirmation) whilst the others occur in the Neotropical zone. The wingspan of adults in this family can go from 42 to 100mm and their body is robust in most species. The wings are triangular; posterior wings present a tail-like projection with oceli designs.”

Dear Daniel!
Thank you for the Id of the id. of the Mania Moth.
Linnaeus said: “Knowledge without names is worth nothing”
Now about 250 years later, I can extend his statement by feeling and saying: “Sightings without names are worth nothing”
The bugs I´m sending you currently are from a mammal- and bird-trip.
In Sweden, my home country I have seen all the Nymphalides and most of the Moths and Hawk-moths. When I´ve been out and have done my best to determine what I have seen, every addition to that is a bonus, for which I´m grateful.
I have in mind to send you two more images. I´ll send them to your Bugman page but give you some background here. The target species on the first image I´m sending you is a Heraclides (Papilio) anchisiades,  Id´ed by Jorge Bizarro, one of the top people on Nymphalides and Moths and Hawk Moths in tropical America. Both the yellow ones and white ones on the same photo I have not even tried. In Pantanal 2012 I identified Phoebis sennae, but there were probably several species on these river banks. It´ll be interesting to see if you can id any of the yellow ones and white ones on this image.
The second image i´ll present on your Bugman-page.
Best regards
Stefan

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Dry husk stuck on rock
Geographic location of the bug:  San Luis Obispo, California
Date: 10/11/2019
Time: 06:33 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Dear Bugman: I found this dry husklike thing on a rock in my front yard.  I pulled it off, but didn’t;t learn anything.  I know it was once either part of some living thing, or it contained or was shielding something living.  Please help!
How you want your letter signed:  Yours, Kathy O’Brien

Mantis Ootheca

Dear Kathy,
This is the ootheca or egg case of a Preying Mantis, and it does not look like it has hatched yet.  Mantids only live a single season, hatching when conditions are right in the late winter or early spring and they mature by autumn.  The female Mantis then lays one or more ootheca that will overwinter.  If you put this ootheca in a sheltered location, or try to attach it to a branch on a tree or shrub, it might still hatch this spring.  Daniel just realized there is no Bug of the Month posting for October 2019, as he neglected to create one at the beginning of the month, so this posting will be tagged as Bug of the Month.  Daniel noticed two native Mantis oothecae in the garden in the past week, so perhaps he will take some images and add to this posting.

California Mantis ootheca on native willow

Update October 15, 2019:  Two California Mantis Oothecae in the WTB? garden
When Daniel returned from work yesterday, he made a point of taking images of the two California Mantis oothecae he found over the weekend.  Though adult Mantids did not make may late season appearances in the garden, they were obviously hiding quite well as the two oothecae are far enough apart to evidence they were likely laid by two different females.

California Mantis ootheca on pine

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  insect ID
Geographic location of the bug:  south central Virginia
Date: 07/31/2019
Time: 09:04 AM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Please help me identify this bug.  Thanks.
How you want your letter signed:  Marc

Atala Hairstreak

Dear Marc,
This is such an unusual sighting, that we are quite excited to post it.  A black butterfly with a red abdomen is quite distinctive, and we quickly identified at the Atala Butterfly on the Blue Butterflies page of the University of Florida Gardening Solutions site where it states:  “
The Atala butterfly (Eumaeus atala Poey) is a rare butterfly with a limited distribution in South Florida. The outside of the butterflies’ wings (when folded together) are deep black, with curved rows of iridescent blue spots. They have a bright red-orange abdomen. The open wings of the male butterflies feature an iridescent, bright blue, while the females have only small streaks of blue on the wings. Newly hatched caterpillars are very tiny and pale yellow. Over a day or two they develop into bright red caterpillars with yellow spots.  Atala butterflies suffered massive population declines in the early 1900s; early settlers nearly wiped out the Atala’s preferred host plant, coontie, for its starch. Today, Atala butterflies are considered rare, but the planting of coontie in butterfly gardens and as an ornamental landscape plant has helped the butterfly populations rebound a bit.”  According to Featured Creatures:  ” the Atala butterfly was thought to be extinct from 1937 until 1959 (Klots 1951; Rawson 1961). Although still considered rare with limited distribution, it is now found in local colonies where its host plant, coontie (Zamia integrifolia Linnaeus. f.), is used in butterfly gardens or as an ornamental plant in landscapes. ”  According to BugGuide where it is called the Atala Hairstreak:  “considered by FL to be a ‘Species of Greatest Conservation Need’ (SGCN).”  We are excited not only because of the rarity of the Atala Hairstreak, but also because though it is found in the Caribbean, North American sightings seem to be limited to southern Florida.  We cannot imagine how this gorgeous Atala Hairstreak found its way to central Virginia.  You might want to contact the Prince William Conservation Alliance and the Butterfly Society of Virginia to report your significant sighting.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination