Owlfly from the Dominican Republic

Subject:  What’s that bug
Geographic location of the bug:  Dominican republic
August 27, 2017 2:53 PM
Hi, while hiking on Quinicua Dominican Republic, found this cicada and a butterfly? i though at first it was a dragonfly but then saw the antenna, do you have any idea what it is.
How you want your letter signed:  Suzette


Dear Suzette,
This is not a Butterfly, but rather an Owlfly in the family Ascalaphidae.  The first time we received an image of an Owlfly from Italy many years ago, we didn’t know what we were looking at since Owlflies seem to have characteristics from so many insect orders.  Owlflies are in the order Neuroptera, and they are classified with Lacewings and Antlions.  Here is an image from BugGuide and the BugGuide description is “Bizarre creatures that look like a cross between a dragonfly and a butterfly. The body resembles that of other neuropterans, more-or-less, but the prominent antennae are clubbed like those of butterflies. Key characters:  Medium to large size, Clubbed antennae, Eyes large and bulge out from head, may rest in cryptic posture with abdomen projecting from perch, resembling a twig.”  We are unable to locate any information on species from Dominican Republic, but we did find images of Owlflies from Costa Rica on Quaoar Power Zoo.


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