Currently viewing the category: "Horntails, Wood Wasps and Sawflies"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  What’s this?
Geographic location of the bug:  Slovakia, central Europe, mixed oak-pine woods
Date: 05/19/2018
Time: 11:05 AM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  I found this bee while hiking through the woods picking up mushrooms (I assume it’s a kind of a carpenter bee, something from Xylocopinae) but I can’t seem to find one that looks like it on the internet. It’s May currently, pretty warm outside already (20°C), but I’m not sure how long has the specimen been lying on the ground (I found it dead already). Also, I should mention, it has tentacles with orange endings wider than the rest of the tentacle.  There’s no section that would visibly divide between the abdomen and chest area. Also, the bee has really long hind legs with slight yellowish colouring at the end of them. It’s almost 3cm long. Has see-through wings about the same length as the bee itself. Has visible mandibulae and maxilae.
How you want your letter signed:  T.

Sawfly

Dear T,
This is not a Bee.  It is a Sawfly, a non-stinging relative of Bees and Wasps.  It might be a Birch Sawfly,
Cimbex femoratus, which is pictured on iNaturalist.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  What’s this wasp
Geographic location of the bug:  Melbourne
Date: 01/20/2018
Time: 05:49 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Wondering what this is
How you want your letter signed:  LB

Bottlebrush Sawfly

Dear LB,
While this Bottlebrush Sawfly is classified in the same insect order, Hymenoptera, as the wasps and bees, it is not considered either.  Unlike wasps and bees, Sawflies, including this Bottlebrush Sawfly, do not sting.

Bottlebrush Sawfly

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Hairless and Bumpy, Yellow Caterpillar in Alaska
Geographic location of the bug:  Eagle River/Anchorage AK
Date: 09/15/2017
Time: 04:24 AM EDT
It’s Sept. 16 and fall is in full swing, most days are hanging around 60 degrees. I found this smooth yellow caterpillar while hiking around, and curious what it was! Unfortunately the poor fellow didn’t seem to be alive.
How you want your letter signed:  NuttyMuffins

Sawfly Larva

Dear Nutty Muffins,
Though it resembles a caterpillar, this is actually a Sawfly Larva, probably the Elm Sawfly.  Sawflies are non-stinging relatives of wasps and bees.  We love posting images of Alaskan insects.  The adult Elm Sawfly is quite impressive.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  caterpillar cluster
Geographic location of the bug:  raleigh, nc
Date: 09/04/2017
Time: 12:11 PM EDT
what in the world is this? do we leave them, feed them to our chickens, or what?
How you want your letter signed:  carrie

Red Headed Pine Sawfly Larvae

Dear Carrie,
Though the insects in your image resemble Caterpillars, they are actually Sawfly larvae.  Sawflies are non-stinging relatives of Wasps and Bees that have larvae that frequently resemble Caterpillars.  Thankfully your image quality was of a high enough resolution that we were able to crop more closely to help identify these Red Headed Pine Sawfly Larvae
,Neodiprion lecontei. There is an excellent page on Featured Creatures devoted to this species where it states:  “Neodiprion lecontei is an important defoliator of commercially grown pine, as the preferred feeding conditions for sawfly larvae are enhanced in monocultures of shortleaf, loblolly, and slash pine, all of which are commonly cultivated in the southern United States.”  We don’t know if the Red Headed Pine Sawfly larvae are able to retain within their bodies resinous compounds from the pine that might make then unpalatable, but we imagine if they don’t taste good, the chickens won’t want to eat them.

Red Headed Pine Sawfly Larvae

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Are these Monarchs?
Geographic location of the bug:  gilford, nh
Date: 08/30/2017
Time: 02:49 PM EDT
Hi,
Found this hatch a leaf between leaves in a patch of milkweed. They have the coloring of Monarch caterpillars, but I have never seen so many together. Do you know what they are?
How you want your letter signed:  Curious in NH, Wendy O.

Sawfly Larvae

Dear Wendy O.,
These look more like Sawfly Larvae to us.  Sawflies are non-stinging relatives of wasps and bees whose larvae resemble caterpillars.  Here is a BugGuide image of a Sawfly larva in a similar position, and here is a BugGuide image of a similar grouping of Sawfly Larvae.  Finally, here is a BugGuide image of a really similarly colored Sawfly Larva, but alas, it is not identified to the species level.  We are posting your image and perhaps one of our readers will be able to assist with a species identification.  Were they actually on Milkweed?

Hi,
No, the leaves were intermingled with the milkweed plants which had sprouted up in our flower garden.  Thanks for letting me know. They looked so much like mini monarchs that I was confused.  I’m in the garden and outdoors a lot and had never encountered anything like these.  Thanks for responding so quickly.
Best regards,
Wendy O.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Unknown Bug
Location: Pembrokeshire
August 13, 2017 5:18 am
Sirs,
What is the bug shown in the attached photographs? It appeared from timber posts that were delivered this week. Apologies for only getting one photograph but it also had what I assume was a stinging needle approx 10mm long. I live in West Wales and have not seen one of these before.
Many Thanks,
Signature: Byron

Great Wood Wasp

Dear Byron,
We just finished posting an image of a Great Wood Wasp from Ireland.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination