I hope you like identifying bugs!
What I’ve got is a fascinating flying dude. It’s totally black and about 1 inch in length with buggy eyes and a triangle head. New to me is that it actually looks at me (rather in my direction) when I move. I’m too used to houseflies that fly straight back into 8-week old spiderwebs after I (yes, I have an unexplainable fettish) untangle them from the web. Anyways, my concern is that it is dangerous in some way? At first I was convinced it had some diabolical reason for being in my house (mostly since it was so black and big!) but now I’m not so sure. However, appearances CAN be deceiving. I would love an I.D. for my lil’ buddy here, and perhaps some peace of mind.
Gratefully,
Rachel B.

Hi Rachel,
You have a solitary wasp from the Sphecine Family. They are not aggressive.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Scary Bug
Hello,
Could you please help me to identify this bug I have never seen one of these before. It was on our ceiling and was terrifying my young son (unfortunately the bug didn’t survive). It was about one inch long excluding legs and feelers. I would like to be able to tell my son what it is and whether or not it is harmless. We live in San Diego, California.
Thank you,
Caroline Gilbert

Hi Caroline,
The Eucalyptus Tree Borer, Phoracantha semipunctata, is harmless to you, but will do considerable damage to your eucalyptus trees. This insect was introduced to southern California from Australia where it has multiplied due to the absence of natural predators. Young bore into the wood of Eucalyptus trees and have destroyed many stands of this common tree.

Orb Weaving Spider
Mr. Bugman
I found this spider in a web in our window well. Do you have an idea of what’s its identity is?
Regards,
Bill

Hi Bill,
You are correct, it is an Orb Weaver.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

A WAY TO ELIMINATE BOX ELDER
HELLO, I AM FROM NEW YORK STATE AND WE HAVE A VERY SERIOUS PROBLEM WITH THE BOX ELDER BEETLES. THEY ARE ALL OVER OUR TREES, OUR POOL DECK AND OUR HOME. OUR NEIGHBOR ONE DAY WAS DOING HER LAUNDRY AND SAW ONE IN THE BASEMENT SO SHE SPRAYED IT WITH A DETERGENT SOLUTION SHE HAD IN A BOTTLE. THE BEETLE DIED IN NO TIME. AFTER THAT WE WOULD FILL UP OUR 2 GALLON SPRAYERS AND PUT A CAP OR TWO OF LAUNDRY SOAP IN IT AND SPRAY THESE BEETLES. THEY DO DIE FROM THIS SOLUTION. THIS IS A CHEAP SOLUTION AND A NON TOXIC SOLUTION.
DEBBIE FENCLAU

Hi Debbie,
Thanks for the great tip. I’m sure our readers will love it. We are posting it at the top of the True Bug page. Incidentally, Boxelder Bugs are True Bugs and not Beetles.

Millipedes? Help…
Dear Bugman,
I recently moved into an large, old house in Italy and have been overrun by a millipede-like bug. Approximately 20 of these appear every day and seem to prefer affixing themselves to the ceiling. I have been blasting them daily with bugspray which is reducing their numbers, but would like to find their lair and get rid of them completely. Any advice….?
Thanks
Dom

Hi Dom,
You do have millipedes. They like damp conditions, and other than being a nuisance, they are not harmful. Populations tend to rise and fall with seasonal and weather conditions, and the drier days of summer should see the numbers decrease. Millipedes also do not wander far from damp ground, and finding them on the ceiling might be a sign of rotting wood in the walls. Sorry, I can’t give you any erradication advice.

Update: (01/20/2008) Millipede IDs
2/3/05 . Probably a representative of the Julidae (Julida) which are common in Europe .
Rowland Shelley
North Carolina State Museum of Natural Science

Dear "Bug man":
I am writing to ask permission to use one or more of your images on a web site. The image is of a tortoise beetle. … The site, which is being developed by students in a biology class entitled “Insect fact and folklore”, is an “Insect ABC” with several pages for each letter of the alphabet. The site is strictly for non-profit educational use, and will be geared toward students at the primary school level. You may visit the site (under construction) at:
http://cornellcollege.edu/biology/insects2005/
or see a previous version at:
http://cornellcollege.edu/biology/insects2003/
Please contact me by email, or contact my professor, Dr. Andy McCollum, by phone, fax, mail, or email (contact information below) to grant or deny permission or if you have any questions you want to ask before deciding.
If you are willing to grant blanket permission to allow other students in this class to use images for this web page, or are unable to grant me or any other student in this class student permission, please specify that and we will add your name to the “do not disturb again” list for this class to prevent you from unnecessarily receiving additional requests from this class.
Thank you,
Brian Schweigl

Professor: Dr. Andy McCollum
Department of Biology
Cornell College
Mount Vernon IA 52314

Hi Brian,
We would be honored to contribute images to your site. We here at What’s That Bug? do not employ the copyright police to patrol the web searching for our images. We like to think of the www as a place to disseminate knowledge. Please link the image back to www.whatsthatbug.com if you don’t mind. You will find that creating more links on your site will put you on the radar with search engines which is how What’s That Bug has gotten so much attention.