Currently viewing the tag: "WTB? Down Under"
What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Unknown Insects
February 15, 2010
Please can you help me identify these insects, found in the garden during the summer months.
Chris Moran
Perth, WA, Australia

Jewel Beetle: Castiarina species???

Hi Chris,
Submitting multiple images of unrelated insects negatively compromises our method for archiving letters, so we are not posting all of your images in the same response.  This is a Jewel Beetle or Metallic Borer Beetle in the family Buprestidae, and we believe it is in the genus Castiarina based on an image of Castiarina decemmaculata posted on the Brisbane Insect website.  Your specimen looks very similar, but it doesn’t seem to be an exact match.  The Virtual Beetles website has numerous similar examples from the genus Castiarina, but we are not skilled enough to provide a definitive identification based on your photograph.  The Buprestidae of Australia website contains a thumbnail image of Castiarina malleeana that also is a possibility, but an image posted on Outdoor Webshots shows the spots converging, which may be an individual variation.  The red coloration on the spots of your specimen seem to be a distinction that might help to properly identify this species.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Unknown Insects
February 15, 2010
Please can you help me identify these insects, found in the garden during the summer months.
Chris Moran
Perth, WA, Australia

Bush Cockroach

Hi Chris,
Not all Cockroaches are pestiferous species that infest homes.  Some Cockroaches are actually quite beautiful and they would much rather live in a natural environment.  This Bush Cockroach, Ellipsidion humerale, is pictured on a Brisbane Insect website page.

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

February 12, 2010
Well, encouraged by your kind words about my photos, I decided to take my current ‘project’ to the next stage: I’ve been photographing these wasps building their nest outside our house, behind a window, and today I thought of taking some outside photos of the progress. I removed the fly screen, stepped on the windowsill, and stretched my hand out with the camera to record detailed images of the geometric components of their nest. Surprise, surprise, the wasps didn’t like it. They suddenly turned on my camera, all of them in line, pointing and shaking their whiskers towards it, and before me realising what was happening, they made their move. I broke my camera when I dropped it, and I’m now tendering about three wasp bites on my swollen arm and fingers.
I think my camera memory card is still OK, so hopefully the nest photos are still there! In the meantime, can you identify my attackers from this earlier image:
Best,
Ridou

Australian Paper Wasp

Hi Ridou,
We are so sorry to hear about your unfortunate encounter with these Paper Wasps in the genus Polistes.  We believe they may be the Australian Paper Wasp, Polistes humilis.  The Brisbane Insect Website has some amazing photographs of this species.  Paper Wasps are not normally aggressive, but they will attack and sting if the nest is threatened.

Hi Bugman,
In case you’re interested: here are two images that I managed to get from my broken camera’s memory card: they were taken at the time when I dropped my camera because of the attack by these paper wasps… The first image shows the structure of the nest they’re building, and the second shows them lining up to defend it.
Best,
Ridou

Australian Paper Wasp Nest

Hi again Ridou,
Do you know if the second nest was from the previous year?

Australian Paper Wasp Nest

Yes, it was… Esa

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Australian Hawkmoth
February 12, 2010
Hi again Bugman. I think this time I actually was able to sort out the species myself going through your ‘hawkmoth’ search: there it was on page 11 out of 19 pages – (www.whatsthatbug.com/2006/02/16/australian-hawk-moth-might-be-coequosa-australasiae/) . I confirmed it on this webpage: www1.ala.org.au/gallery2/v/Sphingidae/Coequosaaustralasiae/coequosa_australasiae_02.jpg.html
Do you agree my identification?
Thanks in advance.

Coequosa australasiae

PS. It was sitting there at night on this deck chair, and I observed it for about an hour, taking occasional photos. It came as a great surprise for me when it started spreading its ‘underwings’ that turned out to be bright orange. It was quite large, maybe 3-4 inches long.
Ridou Ridou
Sydney, Australia

Coequosa australasiae

Hi Again Ridou,
My, you certainly are submitting some wonderful images.  We agree that your Hawk Moth is Coequosa australasiae.  We actually think a different image on the Csiro website is a better visual match to your individual.

Coequosa australasiae

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Is this a wasp ??
February 12, 2010
Hi , I live in Mornington , Victoria . Australia, and for the last month or so we have had these insects flying around the garden , I think that they may be some kind of wasp ? If possible could you identify them for me please and tell me if I should be wary of them ? Thanks for your help.
Ingrid
Mornington , south of Melbourne , Victoria Australia

Blue Flower Wasp

Dear Ingrid,
This beautiful wasp is Discolia soror, and the common name is listed as either the Blue Flower Wasp, Black Flower Wasp or Hairy Flower Wasp depending upon the author.  The adult feeds upon nectar, and the female lays eggs on Scarab Beetle Grubs which are parasitized by the larval wasps.

Blue Flower Wasp

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Australian Mantodea with yellow/red eyes?
February 11, 2010
This Praying Mantis (?) was hovering around me this morning, and then it landed close to me on our outside deck in Sydney. We see a lot of them here, but this one had such peculiar red striped eyes on yellow, with little black spots, as in an eye in an eye. I tried to find one like it on Brisbaneinsects website, with now luck. Any ideas?
Ridou Ridou
Sydney, Australia

Snake Mantid

Hi again Ridou,
This presented a bit of a challenge for us, but we are satisfied that we have identified your delicate green mantis as a Snake Mantid, Kongobatha diademata, but alas, though we have a name, and we know that the Snake Mantid is found in Australia, we were unable to locate any additional information.

Snake Mantid

We found a matching image on the Life Unseen website, and the aerial view nicely illustrates the yellow stripe on the thorax also found in your image.  We located a second photo with no accompanying data on a site called Members Optusnet, and that image illustrates eyes similar to those in your photos.

Snake Mantid

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination