Subject: Black and White bug on Fig Leaf
Location: Phoenix, Az
March 20, 2017 7:01 pm
Hey there while watering my fig tree I noticed this odd looking black and white bug.
It appeared to be fighting with/ holding a gnat of some kind. In any case the gnat was trying to get away.
Was hoping to identify the bug , any help is appreciated!
Signature: Cait

Aphid Wolf attacks Aphid

Dear Cait,
This is a predatory Lacewing Larva, commonly called an Aphid Wolf, and it has captured an Aphid, not a Gnat.  Aphids are considered significant agricultural pests, and Lacewing Larvae are an effective organic method of controlling the problem without introducing insecticides.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Polistes exclamansSubject: What kind of wasp is this?
Location: Southern California
March 19, 2017 11:09 pm
Dear bugman,
I was recently in Whittier and noticed a wasp feeding off of some old wood bench. Interested, I decided to capture a video of the wasp and realize that it’s the exact kind of wasp I was stung by years ago as a child.
Every time I’ve searched for what kind of wasp this could be I come up with an overwhelming amount of varieties of wasps that leave me with no clear indication on this type of wasp.
I’ve never seen a different type of wasp in my life but just this one. I live in Southern California so it’s definitely a native wasp. Could you tell what kind it is?
Thank you.
Signature: Daniel

Paper Wasp

Dear Daniel,
This is a social Paper Wasp in the genus
Polistes.  Paper Wasps construct nests from chewed wood pulp, and it is safe to surmise that this individual is gathering pulp to add to a nest.  Based on this and other BugGuide images, we feel confident that this is Polistes exclamans,  a species described on BugGuide as having “Dark antennae with orange tips.”

Paper Wasp

Subject: Red and black mosquito eater
Location: Ben Lomond, CA 95005
March 19, 2017 7:31 pm
Had this bug land on my garage door and have never seen one like it. Looks similar to a mosquito eater crossed with a wasp?
Signature: Jeff whiting

Crane Fly

Dear Jeff,
This is a Crane Fly, group of insects commonly, though falsely, called Mosquito Hunters.  We believe your species is
Phoroctenia vittata based on BugGuide images.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Camarillo Ca bug
Location: Camarillo, CA
March 18, 2017 5:55 pm
My search only finds a Box Elder bug. Is this what this is?
They are all over my yard.
Signature: Jim

Red Shouldered Bug

Dear Jim,
This is a Red Shouldered Bug,
Jadera haematoloma, not a Boxelder Bug, though they are closely related.  According to BugGuide, the habitat is:  “Yards, gardens, riparian areas, and other areas in association with hostplants. Often found in large aggregations feeding on leaking tree sap, dead insects, or seeds that have fallen from trees overhead. Also forms aggregations in winter to hibernate, often in association with human residences.”

Subject: Lost in Texas or native?
Location: SanAntonio, Texas
March 19, 2017 9:14 am
I think I’ve got the same moth here in San Antonio, Texas…but what I read doesn’t list Texas for it’s home area….
Signature: Katettt

Tersa Sphinx

Dear Katettt,
This Tersa Sphinx is a native species in Texas, based on the distribution map on BugGuide.

Subject: Black Hairy Insect nesr White Pine Beetles
Location: California in Sequoia
March 19, 2017 6:43 am
Cannot identify the hairy black and white insect on this pine tree. The two pine beetles I could identify. This is taken at Wishon Camlground near Doyle Springs/Sequoia, in California.
Signature: Emily

Checkered Beetle and Red Turpentine Beetles

Dear Emily,
We believe your Pine Beetles are Red Turpentine Beetles,
Dendroctonus valens, a species pictured on BugGuide and found in California.  According to BugGuide:  “Primary host: Pinus.”  Your unidentified beetle is a Checkered Beetle in the family Cleridae.  A similar looking species is the Red Bellied Clerid Beetle, Enoclerus sphegeus, which is pictured on BugGuide.  According to BugGuide, the species if found in California.  Of the Checkered Beetle family, BugGuide notes:  “predaceous on other insects, larvae mostly on wood- and cone-borers; some adults feed on pollen; a few species are scavengers” so it is possible that the Checkered Beetle you found was preying on the adults and larvae of the Red Turpentine Beetles.