From the monthly archives: "June 2012"

Subject: Bug from NC
Location: Raleigh, North Carolina
June 30, 2012 9:58 am
This bug was crawling very slowly on the outside of my front door near Raleigh North Carolina. I have never seen a bug like this before. Can you please identify it for me?
Signature: Thank you!

Giant Stag Beetle

This impressive beetle is a male Giant Stag Beetle.

Subject: ???????Brachypelma albiceps (Mexican golden red rump tarantula)????
Location: Sierra Vista AZ
June 29, 2012 11:43 pm
Found crossing the road tonight.
One person said it’s protected and I should let it go.
The other said it depends on species.
It looks funky – is it a egg sac? Then I must let it go where there are no roads.
A few tarantula species are protected under CITES.
I just want to do the right thing if protected.
If not protected then I want to sell it.
But I found out that there is no regs within country of origin and I did find it in SV so I think I can sell it at the pet store or on my own. It looks like a
???????Brachypelma albiceps (Mexican golden red rump tarantula)????
Signature: ptosis

Desert Blond Tarantula

Dear ptosis,
In our opinion, this is
Aphonopelma chalcodes, the Desert Blond Tarantula, which we verified on BugGuide.  We are always in favor of allowing creatures to remain in the wild, though we commend you on getting this guy out of the roadway.  Just because a species is not listed on CITES, does not mean that its population might not be compromised at the local level.  Male Tarantulas like your specimen often wander about in search of their more sedentary female mates, and removing this beautiful Tarantula from the wild will eliminate the possibility of him mating and passing on his genes.

Subject: Bug found in San Antonio, TX
Location: San Antonio, TX
June 30, 2012 2:34 pm
My girl friend in San Antonio found this lovely specimen in her garden buzzing around today (June 30, 2012). She asked me to find out what it is and sent me some pictures. Any help would be greatly appreciated and thank you in advance.
Signature: Georgeanne

Belzebul Bee Killer

Hi Georgeanne,
These photos are wonderful.  This is quite a formidable Robber Fly,
Mallophora leschenaulti, commonly called the Belzebul Bee Killer or Black Bee Killer according to BugGuide, which also notes:  “Remarkably, has been reported to attack and kill hummingbirds.”  These large, robust Robber Flies are easily mistaken for Bumble Bees. 

Belzebul Bee Killer

Thank you, Daniel, for the ID. I will let my pal in Texas know. She will be quite tickled you
like her photos.

Subject: Dead leaf moth
Location: Albuquerque, New Mexico
June 30, 2012 4:13 pm
First of all, thank you for your labor of love in maintaining this site. I don’t visit regularly – just every time I see something unusual and want to learn about it.
I found this moth clinging to the door frame of the house, middle of the afternoon (June 30, 2012) about 12-inches above the ground. The wingspan, side to side, is 2.75 inches. I would suspect it just pupated and is drying its wings, except there is only concrete below – no dirt. It could have crawled there but I don’t see an empty case hanging anywhere.
Camouflage is so good I actually thought it was a dead leaf snagged in a spider web. The seeming appearance of openings and curled texture at the ends of the wings is all done with color shading. Structurally, the wings are flat and smooth.
It is very calm and has not moved when we put a camera within 4 inches of it, a ruler just below to measure, or closed the door. Perhaps an instinctive behavior to avoid attention, or maybe it is nocturnal – waiting for night.
Signature: facinated with nature

Achemon Sphinx

Dear f.i.n.,
Thank you for the compliments on our website.  This lovely moth is an Achemon Sphinx,
Eumorpha achemon.  You can read more about its life history on the Sphingidae of the Americas website.

Subject: Unknown moth of some sort?
Location: Birmingham, AL
June 26, 2012 12:37 pm
My husband came across this bug at his place of work, which is in Birmingham, AL. Never seen one like it before. It didn’t move or fly away while he took a picture, so not sure of specifics outside of how it looks. I’m guessing it’s some sort of moth, but it’s so strange-looking, I’d love to know more about it.
Signature: Jennifer Quakenbuh

Royal Walnut Moth

Hi Jennifer,
This beautiful moth is known as the Royal Walnut Moth or Regal Moth.  The caterpillar is the fierce looking but harmless Hickory Horned Devil.  Each year in late June and July, we get reports of the adult moth and the caterpillar sightings seem to peak in September.  Caterpillars feed on the leaves of walnut, hickory and other trees, including ash, burning bush, butternut, cotton, gum, lilac, pecan, persimmon, sumac and sycamore according to BugGuide.  Adults do not feed.

June 26, 2012
Location:  Mt Washington, Los Angeles, CA

Black and Yellow Mud Dauber gathers mud.

We spent much of Monday working in the garden, trying to get some summer crops planted, albeit on the late side.  Squash is a summer favorite, so we spaded a small patch and removed all the weeds.  We then planted squash and eggplant seeds brought from Italy by Luca.  Then we gave the ground a good soaking.  Needless to say, the Black and Yellow Mud Daubers,
Sceliphron caementarium, began to gather mud.  These nonaggressive solitary wasps frequent the carrot blossoms and onion blossoms in the vegetable patch and there are plenty of spiders for them to hunt.  The female Mud Dauber builds a nest of mud containing multiple chambers, each to house a single wasp larva.  The female Mud Dauber hunts for spiders which she stings and paralyzes, ensuring that the developing larva will have a fresh supply of meat.  The adult wasps feed on nectar.  See BugGuide for additional information on Mud Daubers.

Black and Yellow Mud Dauber