Currently viewing the tag: "food chain"

Subject:  Happy Halloween!
Geographic location of the bug:  Coryell County, Texas
Date: 10/14/2021
Time: 01:48 AM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Hello again! I hope you are all well. Many insects in this photo, and I only know one, I think, a green lynx spider with prey. This photo is titled Macabre Magnolia in my photo collection. I reached up over my head to get a photo of what I thought was a beautiful blossom for my daughter-in-law, who loves magnolias. The joke was on me when I uploaded the photo. Susprise! Such drama, pathos, and humor. My favorite is the grasshopper munching away on the blossom as the rest of the drama unfolds. Photo taken May 30, 2020, and it makes me laugh every time I come across it.  Insect life is… interesting. Happy Halloween!
How you want your letter signed:  Ellen

Macabre Magnolia

Dear Ellen,
How nice to hear from you.  Daniel had been very negligent to the WTB? readership beginning about two years ago due to personal matters, but several months ago he committed to posting 90 new queries per month, though that stalled when he took a train across the country to Ohio earlier this month.  He plans to catch up this week and be on track once again for October.  He was still traveling when you wrote.  We love your image and we are featuring your Halloween Greeting on our scrolling banner.  The Green Lynx appears to be eating a Metallic Sweat Bee and there are several Honey Bees present on the blossom.  We agree the peeking Grasshopper is priceless.  Thanks for thinking of us and at least we got this posted before Halloween.

Thank you so much for the kind response! Wishing you all the best. Happy Halloween 🕸

Highest regards,
Ellen

Subject:  What’s this bee, hornet, wasp?
Geographic location of the bug:  Southwestern pa. South of Pittsburgh
Date: 09/06/2021
Time: 10:40 AM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  At a local playground South of Pittsburgh pa. This thing was on the sign. The larger bug was between 1 and 1.25 inches long not including legs. It appeared to be eating/mating with a “normal” sized bee/wasp. Is this one of those “murder hornets”? I haven’t heard of them in this area yet… Or is this just some large wasp… Thanks for any info.
How you want your letter signed:  The Robe

Red Footed Cannibalfly Eats Wasp

Dear The Robe,
This is neither a Bee, nor a hornet nor a wasp.  It is a Red Footed Cannibalfly, a predatory Robber Fly that feeds on large flying insects, including bee, hornets and wasps.

Subject:  Identify this wasp
Geographic location of the bug:  Greensboro,NC
Date: 08/27/2021
Time: 09:27 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  I was hiking a trail at battleground park with my fiance in Greensboro and we came across this wasp dragging a spider twice it size on the trailer were walking. Would you let us know what it is.
How you want your letter signed:  Jrp

Spider Wasp with Wolf Spider Prey

Dear Jrp,
This is a Spider Wasp in the family Pompilidae, and though your image lacks the necessary detail for a definite identification, we believe your individual is
Tachypompilus ferrugineus.  This species preys upon Wolf Spiders, not to eat, but to feed to her brood.

Subject:  unknown dragonfly
Geographic location of the bug:  sidney, ohio
Date: 08/11/2021
Time: 05:53 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  As it was happening, I couldn’t identify the animal or its action but with a zoomed image from my camera I see that a dragonfly is eating the butterfly.  Later that day I found a wing from the butterfly under this power line.
I live in Sidney, Ohio, USA.  This picture was taken 2 Aug ’21.
I believe that I’ve identified the butterfly as an Eastern Tiger Swallowtail.  I was excited to find what I believed to be the identification of the dragonfly.  It looks very much like a Male Southern Vicetail, Hemigomphus gouldii as pictured here (https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Green_eyes_dragonfly_HNP_face_(16072822547).jpg).
I was disheartened when I learned that the Vicetail is indigenous to southeastern Australia so probably not my dragonfly.
Any help in its identification is greatly appreciated.
How you want your letter signed:  Charlie

Dragonhunter eats Eastern Tiger Swallowtail

Dear Charlie,
Daniel has been in Northeast Ohio for two weeks now and the butterflies, Lightning Bugs and Cicadas are all amazing this year.  Your Eastern Tiger Swallowtail is a female as evidenced by the blue scales on the hind wings.  We turned to Ohio Dragonflies to identify this impressive hunter and we believe we have identified it as a Dragon Hunter on pg 44 where it states:  “
While not very common, when seen this dragonfly will be noticed and remembered. It is our largest clubtail and probably the heaviest of all Ohio dragonflies. Its large thorax and small head are distinctive. As the name suggests, it eats large prey including dragonflies up to the size of the swift river cruiser. They are very sensitive to pollution, and thus require clean streams. The distinctive, large (1 to 1.5-inch across) roundish-shaped larvae spend up to four years living under leaf litter and bark debris at the river’s edge.”  This BugGuide image is a very close match to the eyes and yellow thoracic markings evident in your image.  Thanks for submitting this awesome Food Chain image.

Subject:  Unidentified predatory insect Italy
Geographic location of the bug:  Abruzzo Italy
Date: 07/04/2021
Time: 12:01 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Hello, can you help me identify this obviously predatory insect which appears to be feeding on a bee. The photo was taken 1/7/2021 in Abruzzo Itay. I have shown the photo locally but no-one seems to recognise it.
Many thanks
How you want your letter signed:  J. Seymour

Robber Fly eats Honey Bee

Dear J. Seymour,
This is one impressive Robber Fly in the family Asilidae.  We believe it is
Pogonosoma maroccanum which is pictured in our archives.   It is pictured on the Global Biodiversity Information Facility site and on the Smithsonian EOL site.

Subject:  Big Fly, Wasp, or other?
Geographic location of the bug:  Truckee, CA
Date: 06/30/2021
Time: 05:54 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  I had this large flying insect land on my porch and it appeared to be eating a flying ant. The unknown insect almost looked like a large, elongated horse fly but it might have had a stinger. It had brightly colored orange/red legs
How you want your letter signed:  Ross

Giant Robber Fly eats Termite Alate

Dear Ross,
We enjoyed researching your query, but we are only confident with our identification of your Robber Fly to the family level, though we are gambling that we have also correctly identified the genus.  We believe this is a Giant Robber Fly in the genus
Promachus and it looks very similar to this unidentified individual posted to BugGuide as well as this unidentified individual in our own archives, both unidentified individuals having been sighted in California.  California Robbers identifies four species of Promachus from California, however none of those have red legs.  We suspect this might be either an undescribed species or possibly a species not previously identified in California.  The prey is a reproductive Termite alate, probably the Western Drywood Termite which is pictured on the UC Master Gardeners website.  Perhaps one of our readers will be able to provide a more conclusive identification.

Thank you for the information! I found this all quite interesting!