Currently viewing the tag: "bug of the month"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Fishing spider?
Location: Southeast texas
April 1, 2017 8:01 am
Hi,
I have a backyard pool that we don’t clean or put chemicals in during the winter, so by the time spring comes the pool is full of life. After a storm came a trash bag flew into the pool and when I pulled it out it had this guy on it. From his (or her?) distinctive spots I assume it’s a 6 spotted fishing spider, but I’m not sure. The spider would have had its legs hanging a few mm off of a quarter if he had been standing on one. Around the edge of the pool I have been finding dried out dead spiders stuck on the side with a little bit of webbing. Could those be what this guy leaves behind? How big can these spiders get? Thanks!
Signature: Vikky

Six Spotted Fishing Spider

Dear Vikky,
We agree that this is a Six Spotted Fishing Spider,
Dolomedes triton, a species that is generally found near a body of water, and it sounds like your dormant swimming pool has been a perfect environment for her.  Since it sounds like you are getting ready to clean the pool, we hope you are able to relocate this beauty so that she can live out her life and produce progeny.  The “dried out dead spiders” you describe might have been prey, or they might have been cast off exoskeletons left behind when this individual molted.  Since it is the first of the month, we will be selecting your submission as the Bug of the Month for April 2017.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Can anyone identify this beetle?
Location: Tampa/Lutz
March 1, 2017 7:41 am
Hello,
If you know the common name and species name of this beetle please let me know! Photo taken in the Tampa/Lutz area in Florida
Signature: Francis Pinciotti at Learning Gate Community School

Diaprepes Root Weevil

Dear Francis,
This is a Diaprepes Root Weevil,
Diaprepes abbreviatus, a species “Native to the Caribbean, adventive and established in so. US: so. & central FL (1964), so. TX (Cameron & Hidalgo Cos 2000, Corpus Christi 2005, Houston 2009; map), so. CA (2005), LA (2008); further north in greenhouses” according to BugGuide, which also notes “color highly variable (from gray to yellow to orange to black).”  The Diaprepes Root Weevil is a significant agricultural pest, and according to BugGuide:  “Major pest of citrus crops: larvae often girdle the taproot, which may kill the plant and provide an avenue for Phythophora infections. A single larva can kill young hosts while several larvae can cause serious decline of older, established hosts.”  According to Featured Creatures:  “Diaprepes abbreviatus has a wide host range, attacking about 270 different plants including citrus, sugarcane, vegetables, potatoes, strawberries, woody field-grown ornamentals, sweet potatoes, papaya, guava, mahogany, containerized ornamentals, and non-cultivated wild plants.”  Since it is the first of the month, we will be featuring your submission as the Bug of the Month for March, 2017.

Diaprepes Root Weevil

Daniel,
I greatly appreciate your response and am honored that this photo will be the feature of the month! We’ll be sending more photos to share from Learning Gate Community School.
Best,
Francis

 

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Can you please help.
Location: Canberra Australia
January 31, 2017 2:09 am
Hello thank you for taking the time to help me out I am wondering if you can help me identify this bug? I’m in Canberra Australia and right now it’s summer thank you
Signature: Andy

Fiddler Beetle

Dear Andy,
Normally, we do not like to repeat our Bug of the Month designations, but submissions in January and February are at their lowest, and we just realized it is the Ten Year Anniversary of the Fiddler Beetle,
Eupoecila australasiae, from Australia being designated as the Bug of the Month on our site in February 2007.  According to the Australian Museum:  “Female Fiddler Beetles lay their eggs in rotting logs or in the damp soil under logs. The grubs feed on rotting timber and build cocoons of soil and debris in which they pupate.”  According to Museums Victoria:  “The adult beetles emerge in early summer. They are strong fliers and fly between eucalypt and other trees to feed on nectar. They are found in all states except for Western Australia and are harmless to humans.”  According to Climate Watch:  “It buzzes loudly while flying.”  The markings on the Fiddler Beetle can be green or yellow.

Fiddler Beetle

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Ed. Note:  Bug of the Month
Since we just returned from our holiday, we need to select a Bug of the Moth.  Rain Beetles in Southern California have been experiencing some nice December rainfalls, so they seem a likely candidate to be featured this month.

Subject: Pleocoma octopagina
Location: Wrightwood , Burn Area Dirt Road Turnouts, San Bernardino County, California, USA
January 1, 2017 9:39 am
This December 22, 23,and 24, 2016 ,I drove down from Lake Tahoe south to the Wrightwood Burn area roads just north of San Bernardino in Southern California and back thru rain and snow storms . Meeting up with Mr.Garin Woo for the first morning , we set out our Home made Black lights and Mercury Vapor lite in high hopes of getting some hard to get Pleocoma octopagina Robertson 1970 male Rain Beetles . They have the most Antennae laminae segments or fans of the Male Pleocoma which is 8 . And we were not disappointed !! The rain flights started at 5 am and were intermittent until 6 am and then became steady until 7am and ended. Some were seen still flying around in the growing morning sun lite. We received a very nice series of Flying Large Newly Hatched Male Pleocoma octopagina . Precise Lengths of males were 22 mm to 36 mm with metal calipers . They come out in limited numbers and were quite Large and robust this year . I stayed out a couple more mornings solo . This was even in a completely and totally Burned out ( this August 2016 ) area …..” Truly Toasted “. There is strong evidence to me that the majority of this area’s Bush’s ( highly resistant somewhat to fire ) are still alive under ground and can provide food for the Pleocoma grubs . I have have photo evidence that in adjacent past fires we have clear regrowth coming out of Completely burned terrain / Bushs . The laminae are extremely Thick and robust with their prominent ” 8 fan segments ” . They are very large and strong flyers for Pleocoma males and they came in to Garin’s Mercury Vapor lite the strongest . I spent some time looking for females to no avail .On the way home in the Snow Storm I had to have it in four wheel drive from Bishop all the way home to Tahoe at 20 to 45 MPH ! Cheers ! Gene St. Denis Sierra Nevada Research
Signature: Gene St. Denis

Rain Beetle

Rain Beetle

Dear Gene,
Our editorial staff was away for the recent southern California rains, but we are thrilled that you were able to continue to supply us with Rain Beetle sighting information.

Rain Beetle

Rain Beetle

Rain Beetle Habitat

Rain Beetle Habitat

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Moth
Location: Brisbane
November 30, 2016 3:46 am
Huge moth dog was trying to get. Was wondering what it is?
Signature: Shaun

Giant Wood Moth we believe

Giant Wood Moth we believe

Dear Shaun,
We believe this is a Giant Wood Moth in the family Cossidae, possibly Endoxyla macleayi which is pictured on Butterfly House, though there are other similar looking species in the same genus.  We would not rule out that it might be a Ghost Moth in the family Hepialidae, a very similar looking family that is well represented on Butterfly House, and we should also point out that other members of the family Cossidae are represented on Butterfly House.  We have difficulty distinguishing between the two families.  Caterpillars of Wood Moths are known as Witchety Grubs.  Because of your timely submission, we have selected this posting as our Bug of the Month for December 2016.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject: Costa Rican tarantula – grey and black with red eyes
Location: Costa Rica
October 30, 2016 7:00 pm
Hi,
My husband and I live in Costa Rica, We have a large black tarantula that lives in a hole outside our front door. (2nd attached photo ) We’ve named her Harriet. 🙂 But we came across a very strange looking tarantula the other day – it is grey and black with red eyes (1st attached photo) I could not find anything online that looked similar so figured I would run it by you guys! Let me know what you think – thanks! We also found a 3rd tarantula at our house I also attached a photo of. It is hard to identify them online.
Signature: Kari Pinkerton Silcox

Huntsman Spider from Costa Rica

Huntsman Spider from Costa Rica

Dear Kari,
After opening three of your four email submissions, we feel confident stating that we expect you to thwart our ability to identify exotic species online before long.  This positively gorgeous spider is not a Tarantula, but rather a Huntsman Spider or Giant Crab Spider in the family Sparassidae.  They are easily confused with Tarantulas.  They are large, and they hunt nocturnally without building a web, and some tropical species are rumored to be quite venomous.  The first hint we had, other than starting with a known family and a location, was an image identified as “A huntsman spider, formerly
Olios now being reclassified” on Minibeast Wildlife on a page devoted to the attraction that “The spider fauna on the Osa Peninsula is rich and diverse.”  We found this image of a Huntsman posted to SpiderzRule/BadgeHuntsman page that is described as:  “About 3 to 3 1/2 inches across the legs. Found at night under a heliconia leaf along a rainforest stream at about 200 Meters elevation near Drake’s Bay, Costa Rica. No web seen.”  In this gorgeous WeHeartIt image, you can clearly see the eye pattern of the six eyes, and you can also discern that what you mistook for eyes are actually red ocelli or false eyes on the chelicerae.  Because of several reasons, beginning with the enthusiasm you have written to us with such lovely Costa Rican species, and because it is the First of the Month, we are tagging this submission as the Bug of The Month for November 2016.  Since we do not like to combine different taxonomical categories on our site, we will post your Tarantula images independently.  You are also making us want to start a Costa Rica tag. 

Huntsman Eye Pattern

Huntsman Eye Pattern

Thank you so much Daniel, I really appreciate your time. The interesting bugs in Costa Rica are mind blowing, we have endless photos of cool critters and I didn’t want to overwhelm your inbox too much with all my photos, although it was tempting, haha. But if you do a Costa Rica tag or section please let me know and I am happy to submit some more interesting insect photos!
I shared your Bug of the Month on my Costa Rica travel blog facebook page (Happy Coconuts Travel Blog), that is exciting to be featured. Thanks for doing what you do! 🙂
Here is a photo blog I published a while back on all the interesting creatures outside our door on the edge of the Osa Peninsula of Costa rica if you’re interested in checking out some more cool insect/bug/critter photos:
http://www.happycoconutstravelblog.com/blog/welcome-to-the-jungle
Pura Vida!
Kari Silcox
www.happycoconutstravelblog.com

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination