Subject: cricket or katydid?
Location: Fort Bragg, CA
August 15, 2017 9:07 am
I came across this cricket or katydid in my field in Fort Bragg California. I tried identifying it using online resources, but haven’t found anything that looks like what I found. It has very long stripped antennae, a shield behind its head and a lovely brown and mottled grey color. I have attached two photos of it sitting on my arm.
Signature: Thanks, Jill

Shield-Backed Katydid

Dear Jill,
This is a Shield-Backed Katydid in the genus
Neduba, as you can see by comparing your individual to this image on BugGuide.  According to BugGuide:  “Eggs laid in late summer, cemented to plant stems, these overwinter; one generation per year.”  Your individual is a male.  Female have long ovipositors.

Shield-Backed Katydid

Dear Daniel,
Thanks so much for the ID. Yep, that looks like my guy. So beautiful.
Jill
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Giant bee?
Location: East coast Virginia, USA
August 15, 2017 7:10 pm
This monster was waiting for me as I went out to clean my pool one morning, luckily I caught it by surprise and was able to capture it under the filter basket before it had a chance to attack me. After a few shots of hornet spray, I changed my underwear and took a few pictures. Is this a spawn from hell, a just a really big bee? (Pictured next to a quarter for scale)
Signature: Nokturno

Cicada Killer Carnage

Dear Nokturno,
This is not “spawn from hell” nor is it a “Giant bee”.  This is a wasp known as a Cicada Killer.  Because they are big and scary, Cicada Killers frequently wind up dead when they encounter humans.  They are not aggressive and though female Cicada Killers are capable of stinging, they do not attack humans, so there was no need to spray it to death.  We hope your next encounter does not end in Unnecessary Carnage.

Subject: Red Spotted Purple Caterpillar
Location: High Springs, Fl.
August 15, 2017 3:10 pm
Just wanted to share these photos of a Red Spotted Purple caterpillar that was on my wild cherry tree. My husband got me the tree so that I could have the butterflies but we get very few of them. Their survival rate is low on our property due to so many predators. For protection the next ones to show up are going into the habitat with cuttings . They do become gorgeous butterflies.
Signature: Elizabeth

Red Spotted Purple Caterpillar

Dear Elizabeth,
Thanks so much for sending in your images of a Red Spotted Purple Caterpillar.  We agree that the Red Spotted Purple is a gorgeous butterfly, and sometime back we waxed philosophically that it might be the prettiest North American butterfly.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: bug from Andhra Pradesh India
Location: Andhra Pradesh, India
August 14, 2017 11:25 am
Can you identify this bug? I found it outside the Borra Caves in Andhra Pradesh, India. I’ve never seen anything like it before.
Signature: Celeste

Yellow Dobsonfly

Dear Celeste,
This is really a gorgeous yellow Dobsonfly, and we believe it is the same as this Dobsonfly from Burma that we identified as
Nevromus austroindicus.  According to the Aranyaparva blog:  “a dobsonfly Nevromus austroindicus. Very few people have seen this insect. In fact, they gave it a name and formally described it as recently as in 2012! The specimen was from Karnataka. Shyamal has described it as a living fossil in his blog. The males have spectacularly long, tusk-like intimidating mandibles. This is a classic case of how looks can be deceptive. Although these pincers are long, they are weak and help only during the mating season; to fight away other males and to impress the females. The females, like the one we saw, have short, sharp pincers. If we try to mess around with them, we must also brace ourselves to lose some blood”  and  “Very little is known about this Western Ghats species Nevromus austroindicus. The fact that it has been described so late shows the lack of information about it.” 

Thanks Daniel!  I do a type of hand embroidery called Stumpwork and bugs are one of the things that I like to make.  And as an added challenge, I like to do ones that I find when we travel.
Celeste

How wonderful.  Please send us some images if you can.

Subject:  Two Green Lynx Spider on my Woody Plant
Location:  Mount Washington, Los Angeles, California
August 14, 2017 7:30 PM
Just as the sun was setting, I discovered two Green Lynx Spiders where there used to be one.  Do you think they will mate?
Signature:  Constant Gardener

Two Male Green Lynx Spiders

Dear Constant Gardener,
While the pedipalps are not readily visible, it appears both of your individuals are males.  If this plant provides good hunting, there might be a “survival of the fittest” scenario that plays out here with one Green Lynx getting eaten by the other, or perhaps one will just move on.  Since Green Lynx Spiders do not build webs, they tend to move around a bit, though female Green Lynx Spiders will remain in one location to raise young.  At any rate, having these Green Lynx Spiders on your plants will help to keep unwanted, plant feeding species at bay.

Subject: catapillar species?
Location: Fullerton, California
August 15, 2017 6:37 am
Have found several of these on a California native milkweed, Asclepias fascicularis. They are quite sedentary and don’t seem to be eating the leaves or flowers. They are hard to photograph clearly, as the ‘skin’ is oddly transparent.
Signature: wev

Syrphid Fly Larva on Milkweed

Dear wev,
We do not recognize your caterpillar, and unfortunately, searching online for caterpillars on milkweed leads to Monarch Butterfly Caterpillars, which this is clearly not.  We will attempt to research this further, but meanwhile, we will post it as unidentified.  Perhaps one of our readers will recognize it.

Ed. Note:  August 16, 2017
Thanks to a comment from Cesar Crash, we agree this is most likely the larva of a Syrphid Fly (see BugGuide ) which would mean it was probably feeding on Aphids.