Currently viewing the category: "Clearwings"

Subject:  I don’t believe google
Geographic location of the bug:  Ottawa Ontario Canada
Date: 07/17/2021
Time: 10:48 AM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Dear bugman,
a friend and fellow nature enthusiast suggested i try your platform in my continuous search for both identification and information on the critters i encounter.
It is mid summer in eastern ontario and i met this flying fashionista in my admittedly overgrown front garden hanging out on some not yet flowering sunflower variety.
My reserve image google searches suggested it is a clear wing moth but i’m not convinced…
Thanks in advance.
How you want your letter signed:  Ivy

Female Peach Tree Borer

Dear Ivy,
This is a Clear Wing Moth in the family Sesiidae, a group also called Wasp Moths because many, including your female Peach Tree Borer, are excellent Wasp Mimics.  The sexually dimorphic male Peach Tree Borer looks like a different species as is evident in this image from our archives of a mating pair of Peach Tree Borers.

Subject:  Hairy red and black fly(?)
Geographic location of the bug: Texas (San Antonio)
Date: 04/24/2021
Time: 02:09 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  This gorgeous hairy-breeched insect was obsessed with my (non-flowering) cucumber plant. It looks like a fly but I can’t find it in any databases. I checked for wasps and bees, too! Seen April 24th (late spring)
How you want your letter signed:  Jennifer

Squash Vine Borer

Dear Jennifer,
This is not a Fly.  It is a Moth that benefits by mimicking a Wasp.  This is a Squash Vine Borer, and since cucumbers are in the squash family, we presume it is a female laying eggs.  You can get additional information on BugGuide.

Subject:  Bee??
Geographic location of the bug:  Sw washington
Date: 07/10/2020
Time: 01:26 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  What the heck is this?
How you want your letter signed:  Rochelle

Clearwing Moth

Dear Rochelle,
This is not a Bee, but your mistake is understandable.  This is actually a Clearwing Moth in the family Sesiidae, and many members of the family are very effective Wasp mimics.  We believe this might be an American Hornet Moth which is pictured on BugGuide, and the long ovipositor indicates this is a female.

Subject:  Wtb
Geographic location of the bug:  South UK
Date: 06/07/2020
Time: 11:10 AM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Can’t find this on the web. Can you identify it? It is on a south facing Passion flower.
Thanks,
GT
How you want your letter signed:  GT

Large Red-Belted Clearwing

Dear GT,
Though this looks like a Wasp, it is actually a Clearwing Moth in the family Sesiidae, and many members of the family benefit from mimicking stinging insects like Wasps.  We quickly identified your Large Red-Belted Clearwing,
Synanthedon culiciformis, on UK Moths where it states:  “The moth flies earlier in the year than many other clearwings, being on the wing in May and June.  The species inhabits heathland and woodland, where the host tree, birch (Betula abounds, and is known from much of mainland Britain.”  The site also states:  “Although generally larger than the similar Red-belted Clearwing, the sizes overlap and it is more easily distinguished by the orange-red suffusion at the base of the forewings” and that color is not evident in your images, so we would not rule out that your moth is a Red Belted Clearwing, Synanthedon myopaeformis.  According to UK Moths:  “The moths fly during the day but are not often seen, except by the use of pheromone lures. They occur from June to early August.”  Though the “orange-red suffusion” is not evident, we still believe your individual appears more like the former species.

Large Red Belted Clearwing

 

Subject:  LobsterWasp
Geographic location of the bug:  Western Oregon
Date: 07/03/2019
Time: 11:43 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Found on several cannabis leaves and neighboring foliage.
How you want your letter signed:  DB

Strawberry Crown Moth on Cannabis

Dear DB,
This is one of the Wasp Mimic Moths or Clearwing Moths in the family Sesiidae.  We believe we have identified it as a Strawberry Crown Moth,
Synanthedon bibionipennis, thanks to images on BugGuide.  Were there strawberry plants nearby?  According to BugGuide:  “Larvae bore in the roots near the crown or in the stems near the base of various species in the Rose family (Fragaria, Rosa, Rubus, Potentilla). Considered to be a pest of strawberries. Adults take nectar from many different flowers.”  Since Cannabis is not in the Rose family Rosaceae, we suspect your plant is safe from this Strawberry Crown Moth.

Subject:  Please Identify
Geographic location of the bug:  Western Oregon, Outside Eugene
Date: 03/11/2019
Time: 11:43 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  I found this beauty while visiting a local lake in 2017.  It didn’t attempt to fly away the entire time we were there, and seemed unfazed when I stuck a phone camera several inches from its face.   I was afraid it was dead, but it was still moving a bit.  Thank you!
How you want your letter signed:  Dan

American Hornet Moth

Dear Dan,
This is one of the Clearwing Moths in the family Sesiidae, a group that includes many members that mimic stinging wasps and bees for protection.  Your individual is an American Hornet Moth,
Sesia tibiale, which we identified on BugGuide, and according to BugGuide:  “In flight they closely resemble wasps, even producing the droning sound.”