Currently viewing the category: "Soldier Beetles"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Bugs eating my corn
Geographic location of the bug:  Illinois – USS
Date: 06/30/2019
Time: 11:45 AM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Growing corn for years and this had never been an issue. Two types of bugs have destroyed all my corn in my garden.
How you want your letter signed:  Emilia

Margined Leatherwings

Dear Emilia,
Not every insect found on your corn plants is injurious to your crop.  The image with the smaller beetles does not have enough detail for us to provide an identification, but the beetles in two of your images are Margined Leatherwings,
Chauliognathus marginatus, and according to BugGuide:  “Adult feeds on pollen and nectar; also predatory. Larva is predatory, known to attack corn earworm and corn borer.”  This is actually a beneficial insect on your corn plants.  The damage that is visible to the ears of corn in the images you provided does not look to us like it was caused by insects.  We suspect rodents or some other larger creature is eating your corn at night, and that the Margined Leatherwings were accused of the damage through circumstantial evidence by merely being present at the scene of the crime.

Margined Leatherwing

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Looks like a bee but with strange antennas?
Geographic location of the bug:  Southwest Michigan,   U.S.
Date: 08/28/2018
Time: 05:00 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  I saw this bee on 8-26-2018 in my backyard and have never seen another like it?  Has the stripes like a bee but unique antennas??
How you want your letter signed:  Nancy G.

Goldenrod Soldier Beetle

Dear Nancy,
What you have mistaken for antennae are actually the elytra or wing covers of a Goldenrod Soldier Beetle, a common species that feeds on the pollen and nectar of autumn flowers.  Larvae are beneficial predators.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Goldenrod Soldier Beetle?
Geographic location of the bug:  Omaha, Nebraska
Date: 08/29/2018
Time: 03:48 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  I was told this is a Goldenrod Soldier Beetle. I’m not sure what they are, and if they are destructive. I used to get a ton of bees on this sedum. Now I get these Beetles doing the wild thing.
How you want your letter signed:  Alissa Apel
anapeladay.com

Mating Goldenrod Soldier Beetles

Hi again Alissa,
We don’t believe there is any connection between the disappearance of the Bees and the appearance of Goldenrod Soldier Beetles, a species that will not harm your garden.  According to BugGuide, there diet is:  “Adult: pollen and nectar of fall flowers, esp. goldenrod (
Solidago); larvae feed on locust eggs, insect larvae, cucumber beetles, and other Diabrotica spp.”  Given the predatory nature of the larvae, we consider Goldenrod Soldier Beetles to be a beneficial species.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  What is this bug?
Geographic location of the bug:  Omaha, NE
Date: 08/23/2018
Time: 10:28 AM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Found this bug my marigolds. Will it hurt my flowers?
How you want your letter signed:  Mary P

Goldenrod Soldier Beetle

Dear Mary,
The Goldenrod Soldier Beetle will not harm your marigolds or any other flowers.  According to BugGuide:  “Adult: pollen and nectar of fall flowers, esp. goldenrod (
Solidago); larvae feed on locust eggs, insect larvae, cucumber beetles, and other Diabrotica spp.”  One could infer your garden will be benefit from the presence of Goldenrod Soldier Beetles since they don’t harm the blossoms and their larvae will feed on many creatures that will eat plants in your garden.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  I can’t find the bug online anywhere!
Geographic location of the bug:  Massachusetts
Date: 06/25/2018
Time: 09:28 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Hi Bugman,
I need your help identifying this bug. I have no where else to turn and I have searched for hours for an answer.
Thank you for your service
How you want your letter signed:  A bug wonderer

Soldier Beetle

Dear Bug Wonderer,
This is a Soldier Beetle in the family Cantharidae, and based on this BugGuide image, we believe it is
Cantharis rufa.  According to BugGuide:  “native to, and widespread across the Palaearctic, adventive in NA (e. Canada & ne. US: NF-ON to MA-NY).”  According to the family page on BugGuide:  “Adults eat nectar, pollen, other insects; larvae are fluid-feeding predators, feed on insect eggs and larvae,” hence they are beneficial.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  some beetle??
Geographic location of the bug:  Bay Area, California
Date: 04/17/2018
Time: 02:15 AM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  I found this bug on my peas and oats! Sorry for the bad picture. Is it a harmful insect that I should work to control? If so, how do I do so? Thank you!!
How you want your letter signed:  Jayde

Soldier Beetle

Dear Jayde,
This is a Soldier Beetle in the family Cantharidae, and according to iNaturalist, there are many species in California.  Your individual might be 
Podabrus pruinosus comes based on this BugGuide image.  According to BugGuide: “Adults eat nectar, pollen, other insects; larvae are fluid-feeding predators, feed on insect eggs and larvae” which means they are a beneficial family.  

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination