Delightful insect!
Location: Charlottesville, Virginia
March 6, 2011 1:53 pm
I found this little guy in our central Virginia windowsill one morning. I’ve seen a lot of bugs, but I’ve never seen one like this one before. I’m not sure if it’s a wasp or some type of fly. It was only about 1/4 of an inch when all curled up. The wings were iridescent purple on the back, which unfortunately didn’t show through on the pictures. I left him unattended, and unfortunately during that time, my mom found him and, not realizing how cool I thought he was, she threw him in the garbage. I did get a few fairly good pictures before then, thankfully. Anyway, I’d love some help in identifying it. I’ve browsed whatsthatbug many times in the past, and can’t remember seeing a match. Thanks for your help!
Signature: Jessica

Cuckoo Wasp

Hi Jessica,
This jewel like beauty is a Cuckoo Wasp in the family Chrysididae which you may verify on Bugguide.  According to BugGuide:  “Scientific name is from Greek, chryso, meaning ‘gold’, referring to the metallic golden coloration of some species. The name ‘cuckoo wasp’ is attributed to the fact that this insect, like the cuckoo bird, lays her eggs in the nest of an unsuspecting host.”

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

weird spider scorpion thingy :S
Location: Canada, house
March 7, 2011 12:21 am
i was working in the bathroom today removing old grout, and on a piece of sticky tack, i found what i think were spiders (3)…. they had 6 legs and 2 pincers similar to a scorpion or i guess a crab it was idn about 1/8 of an inch and brown obv they were dead n had been there for some time, but i have seen them in my house alive before
what is it?? and should i be concerned
Signature: The Frannuman


Dear Frannuman,
Most of the North American reports of Solifugids, commonly called Sun Spiders or Wind Scorpions, that we receive come from the arid Southwest.  BugGuide indicates sightings from British Columbia.  Solifugids are fierce predators, but since they do not contain venom, they are not considered to be dangerous to humans, though we imagine they might produce a painful bite if carelessly handled.

Hawaiian salt water gerride
Location: Maui west side
March 7, 2011 10:49 pm
These striders are out in the waves of the Lahaina area. I only see them in smooth water, they go somewhere else when the wind comes up. Those back fins are used for speed, I have not been able to get a photo of a live one. It looks like they can dive under water, but I’m not positive since they are so fast they seem to disappear. Is there an ID for ocean striders?
Signature: w

Pelagic Water Strider

Dear w,
Thanks for sending these photos of Pelagic Water Striders found in the open ocean.  Your observations are quite informative.  We have located an online pdf originally published in 1937 entitled “Biological Notes on the Pelagic Water Striders (Halobates) of the Hawaiian Islands, with Description of a New Species from Waikiki (Gerridae, Hemiptera).” The article identifies the pelagic species
Halobates sericeus and indicates another species Halobates hawaiiensis, which is found closer to shore, apparently in calmer waters.  Here is an excerpt from this published paper by ROBERT I. USINGER :  “The reputed diving ability of these bugs is a subject of considerable controversy. Thus Murray,3 Walker,4 and Henry5 state positively that these bugs dive beneath the surface, while Hay6 and Delsman7 were unable, under any circumstances, to induce them to dive. My own observations are as follows. Neither in captivity nor under natural conditions was I ever able to force Halobates nymphs or adults to dive beneath the surface. In Micronesia I have stood in shallow water amidst many thousands of these bugs and have tried in every way to frighten them or force them to dive. They jump frequently and may move in this way so quickly that they seem to disappear. On the other hand I took a glass plate and forced a number of individuals a foot or two below the surface, holding them there to observe their actions. They were able to swim with very jerky, awkward movements first downward, thence out beyond the edge of the glass and up toward the surface where they quickly broke through the surface film to freedom.”  BugGuide indicates that the genus Halobates contains:  “The only true marine insects. Can be found in the open ocean“, but BugGuide does not have any images.

Pelagic Water Strider

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Bug found in my sink
Location: Aberystwyth, Wales, Britain.
March 8, 2011 3:28 am
I went to get sone water from the sink this morning and was greeted by this bug staring back at me. It moves and looks quite like a centipede but moves pretty quickly. Also it clearly wasn’t happy to be near water.
Please help me figure it out as this is my Uni room so obviously I’m sharing a much smaller space with the thing than most and it’s really creeping me out.
Signature: Cheers Alex


Hi Alex,
This common household pest is known as a Silverfish.

Couple of Brown Bugs
Location: Singapore
March 8, 2011 9:27 am
Hi there,
I remember asking this a couple of days here, maybe my question did not push through this site. Anyways, I found a couple of brown colored bugs, one in a park, another during our macro photo session with some friends here in Singapore. Nobody could rightly identify them. Maybe you would know them, guys. Thanks a lot.
Signature: Giovanni

Bean Bug

Hi Giovanni,
In our opinion, both of your insects look like Broad-Headed Bugs in the family Alydidae.  You may compare your images to photos of North American species posted to BugGuide.

Update:  April 8, 2013
Thanks to David who provided a comment with an identification of the Soybean Pod Bug or Bean Bug,
Riptortus linearis, one of the Broad Headed Bugs.  We verified that on and on FlickR.

woolly bear caterpillar
Location:  Rancho Bernardo, CA
March 7, 2011
Good Evening!
I discovered hundreds of these caterpillars in a vacant lot near my house.  I have always known these cute little guys as woolly bears, but are there different types of woolly bears?  Also what is the specific moth they turn into?
Weather:  Rain in January then the first really warm weekend they were everywhere
Thank you so much for the information
C. Knapp

Woolly Bear

Dear C,
This is a caterpillar of a Tiger Moth in the subfamily Arctiinae.  They are commonly called Woolly Bears and there are many different species with similar caterpillars.  This might be the caterpillar of the Nevada Tiger Moth,
Grammia nevadensis, which is pictured on BugGuide.

Thank you for the quick reply.  Yes, this does look like the Nevada Tiger Moth caterpillar.  I have a few in a container so I will keep an eye on them.
Thanks again.  This site is wonderful!
C. Knapp