Potato Bug in Utah

Subjec:  Half wasp half ???
Geographic location of the bug:  Coral Pink Sand Dunes
Date: 10/24/2021
Time: 02:16 AM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  This bug came walking up to us while camping.  I have tried to identify and am at a loss.  Any idea?  Seen at night, on the Utah and Arizona border, October.  Thanks!!!
How you want your letter signed:  NA

Potato Bug

Dear NA,
Congratulations on your first encounter with a Potato Bug or Jerusalem Cricket, one of the most iconic insects in the American Southwest.  Not true Crickets, Potato Bugs are in a unique family of insects where its closest relatives are in Australia.   Potato Bugs are subterranean dwellers that are most frequently encountered at night after a rain.  Potato Bugs are not dangerous to humans, but they have very powerful mandibles and they might even draw blood from thin-skinned individuals.

Hey Daniel, thank you so much for getting back to me. I guess I should’ve scrolled further on your website.  And now I know that there is a true potato bug. We called potato bugs those little black bugs that roll into a ball… Another name is it Rolly Polly!!  Thanks again for solving our mystery. We deemed it as half wasp half termite.  Haha

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