Currently viewing the category: "Aphids, Scale Insects, Leafhoppers, and Tree Hoppers"

Subject L:  What’s this?
Geographic location of the bug:  Peoria, AZ
Date: 07/14/2021
Time: 12:54 AM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Just wondering what kind of bug this is? Landed on my patio table, lived in Arizona my whole life and never seen one.
How you want your letter signed:  Jenn

Glassy Winged Sharpshooter

Dear Jenn,
This is a Glassy Winged Sharpshooter and here is an image from BugGuide for comparison.  According to BugGuide:
A major vector of Pierce’s disease on grape. Usually not a serious pest within its native range, southeastern US. This species was accidentally introduced into so. California in the early 1990s, probably with ornamental or agricultural stock. There, it has become a serious threat to viticulture.
The biggest problem is that it can spread the disease-causing bacterium Xylella fastidiosa.
The most important biocontrols are egg-parasite wasps in the genus Gonatocerus. Spiders, assassin bugs, and praying mantis prey on the mobile forms.

Subject:  Glassy Winged Sharpshooter on my herb
Geographic location of the bug:  Mount Washington, Los Angeles, California
Date: 06/18/2021
Time: 04:20 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Dear Bugman,
I missed you last growing season.  I noticed a recent comment from Peter about Glassy Winged Sharpshooters on budding marijuana. I sent in a photo two years ago of a Green Lynx Spider eating a Glassy Winged Sharpshooter on one of my plants, but I have to do manual hunting of this unwanted visitor.  I don’t like to use pesticides on my plants, so I catch the litter buggers and just squash them. They can be very difficult to catch though.  Seems they have an uncanny ability to move to the other side of the stem when they are threatened.
How you want your letter signed:  Constant Gardener

Glassy Winged Sharpshooter

Dear Constant Gardener,
Thanks for sharing your tips to the manual control of unwanted insects on your crops.  We are also thrilled to learn you do not use pesticides which can often kill beneficial insects as well as the targeted “pest” species.

Glassy Winged Sharpshooter

Subject:  I’m so glad you’re back!
Geographic location of the bug:  Florida
Date: 05/28/2021
Time: 02:54 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  I’m so glad you’re back online and posting regularly- when the site went inactive, I became quite worried. I know this letter of appreciation is coming a bit late (as the site’s been active for a measure of time now), but I figured I should send a thank you, for continuing to keep this wonderful site up and running!
Since attaching an image is needed, I present this adorable little planthopper (specifically, Acanalonia servillei), which has won my heart- I am willing to say this is the cutest insect i’ve seen this year. I truly love this website and the sheer diversity of invertebrates (and sometimes, vertebrates) on it.
How you want your letter signed:  Squidpastry

Planthopper: Acanalonia servillei

Dear Squidpastry,
Thank you so much for your kind sentiments.  After taking about a year off for personal reasons, Daniel resumed posting this year, but a three week trip to Ohio with spotty internet, software problems and much responsibility caused another brief hiatus.  As Daniel is retiring in a few weeks as a full time tenured Professor at Los Angeles City College, he hopes to be able to devote even more time to What’s That Bug? in the future.  Thanks so much for submitting your image of a Planthopper.  According to BugGuide, the food plant is “host: caper (
Capparis comosa, Capparaceae).”

Subject:  Chinese Wax Scale found when cutting down last year’s sunflower stalks.
Geographic location of the bug:  Mount Washington, Los Angeles, California
Date: 03/20/2021
Time: 02:49 AM EDT
Several weeks ago, Daniel discovered these Scale Insects on the dried stalks of sunflowers and he left them in the front yard until he had an opportunity to identify them on the internet.  A visit to Alamy revealed the genus name Ceroplastes, and searching that on BugGuide revealed the Chinese Wax Scale.  According to BugGuide:  “eggs laid in chamber under body of adult” and “Non native. Introduced from Asia.”  Daniel threw them into the green recycle bin for garden materials after taking the image because he noticed the dreaded Argentine Ants taking an interest in the Scale and he suspects the Ants help to distribute the Scale nymphs to a new food plant.

Chinese Wax Scale


Subject:  Orange and black bug
Date: 03/31/2021
Time: 03:29 AM EDT
Geographic location of the bug:  Queensland Australia
Your letter to the bugman:  Hello do you know what’s this is?
How you want your letter signed:  Holly

Giant Scale Insect

Dear Holly,
This is the first real insect identification request that Daniel the Bugman has answered since last July when a personal matter added to the cumulative impact of the pandemic and caused Daniel to disconnect from the curious public.  We truly hope this is a sign that Daniel will return to daily What’s That Bug? postings.
This is a Giant Scale Insect in the genus
Monophlebulus, and you may verify its identity on Project Noah. According to the Atlas of Living Australia:  “A slow moving wingless Hemiptera that feeds on plant sap. This Genus is found in Australia and South East Asia and is know to feed on Eucalyptus and Callistemon among other species. Some are colourful, beneath their white, waxy fluffy coating – including bright orange and blue. Some are as large as 25mm and even as adults they look rather like insect larvae. The females are wingless. Like some other mealybugs members of this Genus are occassionally tended by ants.”

Subject:  Stumpstabber – Megarhyssa sp.
Geographic location of the bug:  Sierra Nevada range route 88
Date: 06/23/2020
Time: 01:40 AM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  My friend took this pic and because she knows my love of all things “bug” asked if I could find out anything about it.  Been doing some poking around and the  closest I could find was family Ichneunonidae Megarhyssa nortoni.  It’s quite striking in coloration.  Just wanted to share because I haven’t found a photo anywhere that matches
How you want your letter signed:  Terriann

Parasitic Wasp

Dear Terriann,
This is definitely a member of the superfamily Ichneumonoidea that includes the family Braconidae as well as the Ichneumon, and we believe this might be a Braconid, possibly in the genus
Atanycolus that is represented on BugGuide.  A definitive identification might not be possible as this is a huge superfamily with many unidentified members.  According to BugGuide:  “Next to impossible to identify this genus from images alone, however it is one of the more common genera in the subfamily. Identification of images on this guide page are NOT absolute! “