Micrathena sagittata?
Just came across your site, and it’s fantastic! Can you confirm whether this little darling is a Micrathena sagittata? Most of the sagittata photos I have seen show this species with much more yellow than black. This photo was taken at Cumberland Island, GA, in August.

Hi there Karen,
You certainly do have the Arrow Shaped Micrathena here. This is a shot of the underside, hence the markings look different. Additionally, there is often much variation from specimen to specimen.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Banana Spider Family
Hi Bugman,
I like your site. It answered a couple of what kind is that spider questions for me that I was unable to find out anywhere else. I live in Jacksonville FL. These banana spiders really liked the bug traffic my front porch light drew in the fall last year and it was great to have them there for the trick or treaters on Halloween. I ended up having to move them however because some of my houseguests would literally freak out and refuse to walk under them. Alas after moving them to a nearby bush they were around for only about a week longer and disappeared. I have seen a lot of brown widows, black widows, orb weavers and a few brown recluses in and around my home. Thanks for an interesting and informative website.
Jim A.

Hi Jim,
What a great photograph. The diminutive spider on the right is the much smaller male Banana Spider or Golden Silk Spider. The tiny males live on the periphery of the much larger female’s web. The female on the left appears to not have a mate.

What is this bug?
My neighbor showed these to me and wanted to know what they are. He showed me a tree in his yard that has small round holes in it. The bark is falling off where the holes are and the tree is dying. Are the holes being made from these insects or another? Could it be that these insects are feeding off of another bug that is destroying his trees?
Awesome site,
Dan Shope

Hi Dan,
These insects are Giant Ichneumons in the genus Megarhyssa. They feed on the larvae of wood boring insects. The tree could have been dying on its own which attracted the boring insects, or it could have had an infestation of wood boring beetles or other insects that contributed to its demise. At any rate, once the wood borers were present, the Giant Ichneumons were attracted. These beneficial insects help to control the populations of more destructive insects, kepping the delicate balance of nature.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Florida Love bugs
Found your site and love it. Great pictures and information! I noticed that you do not have pictures of the Florida Love bug. I am sending you one of a male and one of the male and female in the way they are found most often. If I am able to get one of the female alone I will send that also but so far I have not found one. They are just now coming into season, October and May I think are the times they fly and make a real nuisance of themselves.
Yvonne Griffiths
Morriston, Florida

Thank You Yvonne,
We just love getting new species and new additions to our Love Among the Bugs page. How appropo that these flies are called Lovebugs. Plecia nearctica belongs to the Family Bibionidae. They are often hazardous to motorists because of their sheer numbers on roadways. Here is an excellent site with much information.

WHAT IS IT!!!!!!!!!!
Hi Bugman,
This is Bryce again Freshman of Kittson Central High in northwestern Minnesota. I like to lure bugs close to the house with a light and found what I assume is a Phantom Cranefly, but IT’S ENORMOUS. I put a ruler by it to show you it’s true size. Bryce

Hi Again Bryce,
Yes this is a Crane Fly, probably genus Tipula. Our Audubon Guide says they grow to 2 1/2 inches and yours is considerably larger. This is not, however, a Phantom Crane Fly which has distinctive black and white markings.

Hi…..I took this photo on a bush in my front yard in Michigan’s upper peninsula. I found out it’s a Crane Fly but can you tell me the complete name for it. Thanks,

Hi Ron,
We contacted Eric Eaton to see if he recognized your species of Crane Fly. Here is his reply: “Well, shoot! I recognize it, but forget which genus it is. There is a picture of one in the photo gallery of the World Catalog of Tipulidae website; also pretty sure there is another image on the Crane Flies of Pennsylvania website, and if not, the webmaster of that site, Chen Young could ID your image. Sorry to refer you on again! Eric ” So, we followed Eric’s lead to The Crane Flies of Pennsylvania and discovered an image of your lovely Pedicia albivitta.