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

Subject:  Giant Wood Moth?
Geographic location of the bug:  Black Rock, Melbourne
Date: 12/10/2018
Time: 04:32 AM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  I think these are Endoxyla cinereus, and I assume they are mating? Some students of mine found these in the school playground – absolutely fascinated. The CSIRO page still doesn’t show it as present in Victoria, so perhaps it is something else?
How you want your letter signed:  Andrew P

Mating Wood Moths

Dear Andrew,
We agree that these are mating Wood Moths in the family Cossidae, but we cannot confirm the exact species with any certainty.  We often have trouble differentiating members of this family, and we also confuse members of this family with the Ghost Moths or Swift Moths in the family Hepialidae, which are pictured on Butterfly House.  While we would not rule out that this might be
Endoxyla cinereus, which is pictured on Butterfly House, we can state that it really resembles the individual we posted earlier today that we believe is a Wattle Goat Moth, Endoxyla encalypti.

Mating Wood Moths

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Unidentified large Australian Moth
Geographic location of the bug:  Recliffe Peninsua, Queensland, Australia
Date: 12/09/2018
Time: 07:40 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  I snapped this beauty outside a fish and chip shop on the weekend, taking a rest on a kerb, which would make it about 15cm from front legs to wing tips. I have no idea what sort it is, though, and haven’t seen one before. Can you help? It would be good to put a name to the face, as it were.
How you want your letter signed:  Joshua

Wattle Goat Moth, we believe

Dear Joshua,
This appears to be one of the Wood Moths or Goat Moths in the family Cossidae, possibly the Wattle Goat Moth,
Endoxyla encalypti, which is pictured on Butterfly House where it states:  “The adult moths have forewings that are speckled grey and brown with indistinct light and dark streaks. The hindwings are reddish-brown at the base, fading to grey-brown at the margins. The wingspan is around 10 cms.  The thorax of the adult moth has an uncanny likeness to the head of a mouse! The ‘eyes’ of the mouse are the thicker parts of the bluish lines running on either side of the thorax, located just behind the real eyes.”

Thanks Daniel. The wingspan of this individual was definitely greater than 10cm, but that does look a very close match. Appreciate the help!
Josh

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  this bug dropped into my pond
Geographic location of the bug:  Noosa, Queensland Australia
Date: 12/08/2018
Time: 06:57 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Found this guy on the surface of my pond – guessing it dropped from the tree above??
How you want your letter signed:  Fi

Remains of a Centipede

Dear Fi,
Your image is of the partial remains of a Giant Centipede, possibly 
Ethmostigmus rubripes.  According to The Australian Museum:  “This is the largest native Australian centipede and is a member of the scolopendrid family.”  The site also states:  “The Giant Centipede ranges in colour from dark blue-green-brown to orange-yelllow.  It has black bands along the body and yellow legs and antenna.  The body is long and flatterned with 25 or 27 body segments and 21 or 23 pairs of legs. The first pair of legs behind the head are modified claws which curve around its head and can deliver venom into its prey. The venom is toxic to both mammals and insects, but does not appear to be strong enough to kill large animals quickly.”  We can only speculate on why you only discovered the posterior remains.  Perhaps a predator like a bird or lizard ate the front end of the Giant Centipede. 

Thanks.  Yes, that makes sense.
Fiona McComb

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  I think it is under the order Mecoptera
Geographic location of the bug:  Sydney Australia
Date: 11/22/2018
Time: 07:07 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  Hello,
I live in Sydney Australia and it is currently late spring.
I spotted this insect on my balcony and think it is under the order Mecoptera. I tried to catch it to give to donate to the entomology department at the University of Sydney because I know they don’t have many.
I am very interested in knowing what type of insect it is because I spent 3 months catching insect for my entomology major work and just handed it in. Shame I didn’t find one 3 week earlier!
Thank you for your time.
How you want your letter signed:  Ethan

Giant Blue Robber Fly

Dear Ethan,
This is definitely NOT a Scorpionfly in the order Mecoptera.  It is a True Fly in the order Diptera, and we believe it is a Robber Fly in the family Asilidae.  We believe it might be a Giant Blue Robber Fly,
Blepharotes spendidissimus, which is pictured on Brisbane Insects where it states:  “The Giant Blue Robber Fly has the relatively small head, legs are not long but with board abdomen. The body and legs is covered with short grey hairs. Whole body, includes eyes, abdomen and legs are in dark steel blue colour. Pair of Wings are tinted in steel blue as well. “

Giant Blue Robber Fly

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Colourful ant!
Geographic location of the bug:  Jindivick, Australia
Date: 12/05/2018
Time: 08:22 PM EDT
Your letter to the bugman:  I have found a few very colourful ants in my vegetable garden recently, and was wondering if you knew the species, it is approximately 1.3 cm long, has some red features across its body and is covered in a metalic green/blue shell, its abdomen sometimes charges like a scorpion tail, but has no visable stinger – please note that the ants in these photos have not been harmed, and the one in the glass has been promptly released after photographs were taken, as it was within my house
How you want your letter signed:  Ben, not into ants – but into this one

Blue Ant

Dear Ben,
Though it is commonly called a Blue Ant,
Diamma bicolor, this beautiful creature is actually a flightless, female Flower Wasp.  According to Oz Animals:  “Blue Ants are not ants at all but the wingless females of a species of Flower Wasp. The female is has a glossy blue green body with reddish legs. They move across the ground with a rapid restless motion with abdomen raised above the ground. The winged male and is slender and much smaller with more typical wasp appearance. Males have black with white spots on the abdomen. The female wasps paralyse mole crickets as food for their larvae. The female wasp can give a painful sting if disturbed, but they are not commonly encountered by people.”

Blue Ant

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination

Subject:  Western Subterranean Termite Alates
Geographic location of the bug:  Mount Washington, Los Angeles, California
Date: 11/22/2018
Time: 12:30 PM EDT
For the past week, What’s That Bug? has been experiencing technical difficulties receiving images after a recent software update.  While we have been unable to post any new submissions from our readers, Daniel took some images of recent insect activity near the WTB? offices.  Los Angeles got some badly needed rain last Wednesday night, and then on Thanksgiving Day, Daniel noticed several interesting semi-circles of Termite Wings after he noticed the dreaded Argentine Ants out in large numbers.  Though this is only speculation, Daniel believes that when the winged Termite alates emerged from the wooden fence, they were attacked by the ants before they had a chance to take wing.  The beautiful day did reveal a goodly number of flying Termites getting eaten by black phoebes and other insect feeding birds.

Argentine Ants and Termite Alates with discarded Termite wings

Termite Wings

 

What's That Bug? does not endorse extermination