Currently viewing the category: "attack of the fungus"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Stumped two Universities so far with this amazing white spider…
February 20, 2007
Hello there:
So far two Universities have no idea what this amazing white spider is. It was found with many others in an old house my friend *was* considering buying in Easton, CT. ABOUT PHOTO: Subject’s photo was taken in Easton, CT- USA. Estimated size 2-4 inches. This photo has not been altered in any way except reduction of resolution. Oh, the spider was very much alive. Many of his brethren too. In fact, my friend could not sleep for many nights after observing all the crawling.

Hi Cary,
The reason we asked if the spider was alive is that this looks like it could be a fungus infection on one of the spiders in the Pholcus genus. Your further clarification tends to rule that out. We do not recognize your spider, nor have we ever seen a spider that resembles this. Sadly, your image does not have enough critical focus to reveal any details. We will try to search for information as well as check with some of our contributors. One of our readers wrote back to us: ” Oh gee, this is really ridiculous-looking. Sorry but no way is this thing alive, despite what Cary’s friend said. There is no real focus, so you can’t even be sure what you are looking at, but to me it looks either as you say, like a dead 2 inch daddy-long legs completely ‘bloomed out’ with a fungal growth, or perhaps more likely it is a molted exoskeleton hanging on an external wall which got coated with freezing condensation (sort of like frozen dew) in winter. I can well believe there were living daddy-long legs running around in the basement in this place, but they would have been normal color and normal appearance, not like this. “

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

unknown eggs? and spider
Hello, I came across what I think may be some insect eggs. They were bright red and attached to the underside of a fallen log.
Also, I came across this little spider in a clearing in the same patch of mixed woods in southeastern Georgia. Any ideas what either may be?

Hi Anthony,
The spider is an Araneus Orb Weaver, and we suspect the eggs might be some species of Moth. Moths often lay eggs in clusters that resemble this. The vast quantity has us baffled though, and we wouldn’t rule out an odd type of fungus. It is difficult to tell from a photograph.

Thanks for the info, I had collected some of those “eggs” in hopes of hatching them, I checked them again today; they had turned dark brown. I looked a little closer and saw tiny stalks so I lightly brushed them and they puffed. Odd fungus indeed.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

help with identifying this moth
Yes, this is a moth I think. Tentacles are protruding from and around its back. It rests peacefully in the coolness of the Tuskegee National Forest on one of the thousands of long leaf pines surrounding me. I notice it’s absolutely nothing I have ever witnessed before. Of course I need your help, please.
Thank you for your time.
Ryan Kennedy
Print Shop Staff
Alabama Education Association

Hi Ryan,
We really needed to ask Eric Eaton about this one. Here is his reply: “Whatever this WAS, it was attacked by some kind of fungus, and the fruiting bodies are the fireworks coming out of it. I’d post this to bugguide and see what others have to say on it. Eric” We are going to post this on BugGuide to see if we can get any additional enlightenment.

Akanthomyces Fungus
(11/12/2006) about the photos with the fungi growing on insects
Hello, What a great site!!!! I was looking at the photos under your fungus tab and was going to tell you what was killing the fly and the moth if you didn’t already know. The fly has been killed by some sort of fungus in the Entomothorales (sorry that I can’t be more specific than order on this one). However, the moth has been killed by a fungus in the genus Akanthomyces. I hope that this is able to add to your site.
Ryan Kepler

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination