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BS: New or startling bugs in your area

Donuel 10 Jun 08 - 11:57 AM
Liz the Squeak 10 Jun 08 - 12:50 PM
Bee-dubya-ell 10 Jun 08 - 01:18 PM
Bee 10 Jun 08 - 01:27 PM
pdq 10 Jun 08 - 01:28 PM
Stilly River Sage 10 Jun 08 - 01:51 PM
Peace 10 Jun 08 - 02:06 PM
GUEST,TIA 10 Jun 08 - 02:10 PM
Bee 10 Jun 08 - 02:46 PM
The Villan 10 Jun 08 - 04:08 PM
Susan A-R 10 Jun 08 - 04:21 PM
Bee-dubya-ell 10 Jun 08 - 05:25 PM
Stilly River Sage 10 Jun 08 - 06:15 PM
GUEST,Chief Chaos 10 Jun 08 - 06:39 PM
Donuel 12 Jun 08 - 11:35 AM
Donuel 12 Jun 08 - 11:45 AM
Bee 12 Jun 08 - 11:53 AM
GUEST,Shimrod 12 Jun 08 - 12:29 PM
gnu 12 Jun 08 - 01:49 PM
Bee 12 Jun 08 - 02:45 PM
gnu 12 Jun 08 - 03:24 PM
Bee 12 Jun 08 - 04:15 PM
Melissa 12 Jun 08 - 11:36 PM
rhythmn 12 Jun 08 - 11:43 PM
Stilly River Sage 13 Jun 08 - 12:41 AM
Lonesome EJ 13 Jun 08 - 01:05 AM
Stilly River Sage 13 Jun 08 - 01:10 AM
Bee 13 Jun 08 - 09:56 AM
Donuel 13 Jun 08 - 06:07 PM
Melissa 13 Jun 08 - 06:26 PM
Bee 13 Jun 08 - 11:13 PM
Janie 14 Jun 08 - 12:53 AM
Q (Frank Staplin) 15 Jun 08 - 12:15 AM
GUEST,Laurie 18 Jun 08 - 04:03 AM
Bee 18 Jun 08 - 01:23 PM
Bee 18 Jun 08 - 01:26 PM
Jim Dixon 18 Jun 08 - 01:40 PM
pdq 18 Jun 08 - 01:49 PM
Stilly River Sage 19 Jun 08 - 02:09 AM
theleveller 19 Jun 08 - 05:28 AM
Dave Hanson 19 Jun 08 - 07:42 AM
GUEST 04 Jul 08 - 01:25 AM
Bee 04 Jul 08 - 11:32 AM
Donuel 04 Jul 08 - 11:34 AM
GUEST,Laurie 04 Jul 08 - 12:17 PM
Bee 04 Jul 08 - 12:49 PM
Donuel 04 Jul 08 - 09:14 PM
Donuel 04 Jul 08 - 10:13 PM
Donuel 04 Jul 08 - 10:36 PM
Bee 04 Jul 08 - 11:49 PM
Janie 05 Jul 08 - 12:06 AM
Bee 05 Jul 08 - 12:34 AM
Donuel 05 Jul 08 - 09:10 AM
Bee 05 Jul 08 - 09:31 AM
Donuel 05 Jul 08 - 01:25 PM
gnu 05 Jul 08 - 02:14 PM
open mike 05 Jul 08 - 04:03 PM
Stilly River Sage 05 Jul 08 - 04:24 PM
open mike 05 Jul 08 - 06:52 PM
Bee 05 Jul 08 - 07:16 PM
gnu 05 Jul 08 - 07:29 PM
Donuel 05 Jul 08 - 07:32 PM
Bee 05 Jul 08 - 07:35 PM
gnu 05 Jul 08 - 09:50 PM
gnu 05 Jul 08 - 09:55 PM
Stilly River Sage 06 Jul 08 - 12:43 AM
gnu 06 Jul 08 - 06:29 AM
Stilly River Sage 06 Jul 08 - 10:44 AM
GUEST,Ingrid Frances Stark 07 Jul 08 - 01:59 AM
GUEST,Ingrid Frances Stark 07 Jul 08 - 02:01 AM
gnu 07 Jul 08 - 12:44 PM
GUEST,JAK 06 May 09 - 10:01 AM
Donuel 06 May 09 - 10:13 AM
Stilly River Sage 06 May 09 - 01:01 PM
Ebbie 06 May 09 - 06:24 PM
Ebbie 06 May 09 - 06:32 PM
GUEST,donuel 06 May 09 - 07:16 PM
Ebbie 06 May 09 - 11:48 PM
GUEST 07 May 09 - 03:24 AM
GUEST, topsie 01 Oct 09 - 09:51 AM
maeve 01 Oct 09 - 10:06 AM
GUEST, topsie 01 Oct 09 - 10:18 AM
Skivee 01 Oct 09 - 04:34 PM
CarolC 02 Oct 09 - 12:56 AM
maeve 02 Oct 09 - 01:31 AM
CarolC 02 Oct 09 - 03:16 AM
Skivee 02 Oct 09 - 12:34 PM
Bob the Postman 03 Oct 09 - 10:35 AM

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Subject: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Donuel
Date: 10 Jun 08 - 11:57 AM

Every summer I find at least one Egyptian Scarab beetle here in Maryland. Maybe they escaped from a lab or a ship. The weather change has brought many new species as others are in peril.

Yesterday I saw:
a 3/4 inch long flying neon electric metallic green bug.

a 4 1/2 inch wing span rapidly fluttering nocturnal bug that was too fast to see clearly.

tiny sweet (sweat?) bees in great numbers.

gorgeous blue sptted butterflies that come from catapillars with similar blue spots.

Yellow swallow tail butterfly.

2 1/2 inch giant wolf spider.

Mosquitos that are so small they can pass through normal screens.
Tiger mosquitos that are large fast and stripped in interesting patterns.

and one solitary June bug.


................
What is missing so far are fire flies, May flies that have the sky blue cotton puff on their body, preying mantis AND BUMBLE BEES !?


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 10 Jun 08 - 12:50 PM

I have a friend who lives not too far away (like, still in London but one of the greener bits) who was dive-bombed by a stag beetle looking for its mate last week... good news as the stag beetle is quite rare nowadays. It found its mate in a bush.

I've seen bumble bees in the garden and my complement of Garden Orb spiders seems to have doubled - along with their audacity! Their favourite spinning place seems to be across the back door when it's left open. Obviously they think one really big meal should do them for the summer. It's almost a shame to unhook the webs which are exquisite.

So far only the one wasp, a huge queen looking for a suitable nesting spot. Flies and mosquitoes are back as usual.

Nothing really new or startling - unless you call having an orb spider weaving its web at neck height across the open door startling...

LTS


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Bee-dubya-ell
Date: 10 Jun 08 - 01:18 PM

Don't know if it's a new bug, but the effects were rather startling.

We have a 1/2 acre lotus pond that was emerging from its winter dormancy in fine form, and in less than a week all the above-water leaves (some lotus leaves float on the water, others grow on stalks above the water) had been totally skeletonized by some sort of caterpillar. We had to spend half a day poling our canoe around in the pond, cutting off affected leaves, and burning them. The new growth seems to be coming in healthy, so I guess the egg-laying moths have either died or moved on.

What's odd is that it's never happened before. Oh, we've had some insect damage before, but not large scale. But I suspect that the culprit is lack of rain rather than a new type of pest. Lotus leaves are extremely slick and regular rains probably keep insect eggs and larvae washed off of them. That just hasn't happened this spring.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Bee
Date: 10 Jun 08 - 01:27 PM

Many insects, especially flying ones, are opportunists - they may not find your garden for many years, then one flies in lays eggs on your favourite plant, and you have an infestation. Some skeletonizer has been doing a number on one of my healthiest columbines this spring.

This is the best time of year in my area for looking at moths. I have a flourescent bulb in one of my outdoor lights, so I can turn it on for a while after dark and go look at all the marvellous moths that gather and try to identify them in online guides. Many of them are very beautiful.

Donuel, your big fluttering nocturnal bug: it's too early in the season here, but sounds like a Dobsonfly, or Fishfly - they are huge, harmless, and startling to see.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: pdq
Date: 10 Jun 08 - 01:28 PM

"a 3/4 inch long flying neon electric metallic green bug"

Sounds like the Green June Beetle, Cotinus nitida (Linnaeus). Some places in the country it's called the Fig Eater and can be a serious pest.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 10 Jun 08 - 01:51 PM

Bruce, you might be able to use a BT product to get rid of that caterpiller in your pond. Bacillus thuringiencus isrealei (BTI) is meant to kill mosquito larvae in water, but it might also parasitize the lily caterpiller if it gets down to the water level. This form comes in donut shaped things called mosquito dunks (look at Home Depot). The other form that should work is "regular" BT, one brand you'll find is Thuricide. It's a liquid concentrate, put in a hose end sprayer. (Keep the bottle in the fridge so it'll last longer.) It stops the caterpillers (or web worms, etc.) by not letting them digest what they eat, so they stop eating and die. Don't broadcast this farther than you need it because it will kill butterflies (since they are from caterpillers, it kills the mature form of the critter also).

Every so often I'll see interesting bugs that I've photographed, though I don't always follow-up to learn more about them. Here was some kind of slow-moving dung beetle (yes, that is dog poop in the background) that was two or three inches long. Very striking eye spots.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Peace
Date: 10 Jun 08 - 02:06 PM

Pic to go with pdq's post.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: GUEST,TIA
Date: 10 Jun 08 - 02:10 PM

Central PA - we are finding a lot of Stink Bugs IN THE HOUSE! Seen 'em before outside (rarely), but now they are crawling on the walls every day. One landed in my hair the other night, and when I absent-mindedly swatted at it (without looking), it let fly with the goods. EEEEWWWWW. A very strange chemically smell.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Bee
Date: 10 Jun 08 - 02:46 PM

Whole page full of Dobsonflies and Fishflies over at What's That Bug (great site).

http://www.whatsthatbug.com/dobs.html


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: The Villan
Date: 10 Jun 08 - 04:08 PM

Saw a larch wood wasp on the weekend (UK). I thought it was a massive wasp.

I think it was probably a Giantwood wasp. I don't think they sting (do they). They look frightening when flying.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Susan A-R
Date: 10 Jun 08 - 04:21 PM

We are getting a fair amount of new stuff. Those little red beetles that seem to love only lillies (mine are being eaten to the nub) Lots more mosquitos west of us (also lots fewer bats. Wonder if there's a connection) Ticks, which didn't like it here much because it got so cold, but they seem to be managing now. Not as many fireflies, but out in the hinter lands they are still gleaming. I think there's just too much light here in town.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Bee-dubya-ell
Date: 10 Jun 08 - 05:25 PM

Maggie, yes, BT is the thing for caterpillars. Had we caught indications of the infestation early enough, we would have used it, but the damage happened while we were away at a festival. The pond looked normal on Wednesday before Memorial Day, but when we next saw it the following Tuesday it had been eaten alive. Spraying at that point would have been pointless since we needed to get all the dead and damaged leaves out 'cause they were ugly.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 10 Jun 08 - 06:15 PM

I guess my earlier post didn't go through. That "What's That Bug?" site is wonderful! That photo is a "click beetle" or "Eyed Elator" (see about 1/3 of the way down the second beetle page.)

It's also in my Texas Bug Book by Howard Garrett.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: GUEST,Chief Chaos
Date: 10 Jun 08 - 06:39 PM

Donuel,

The blue butterfly, the swallowtail, and the wolf spider are all native to Maryland, at least in the Baltimore area where I used to live.
If you've found a real Scarab beatle it would be worth some coin to any bug collector. I would be a little skeptical unless the bug was a lot larger than our usual June bugs which look the same.
The Tiger mosquitos are indeed an import, I believe from Southeast Asia.
In this area we have an infestation of green assassin bugs and I can tell you they have a nasty bite.
Every so often I see very large (1 to 1.5 inch in length)ant like insects that are covered with a scarlet hair and have at least one stripe around their abdomen. I haven't been able to actually identify them yet. I always see only one of them, not a swarm.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Donuel
Date: 12 Jun 08 - 11:35 AM

Bee, I am surprised you know of the Dobson fly. I found one on a bridge many years ago.

IT HAD PINCERS ALMOST @ INCHES LONG

They only live as a flying insect for about 2 days.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Donuel
Date: 12 Jun 08 - 11:45 AM

@=2

The coolest bug ever is an aphid that spins its own airplane in the shaped of a giant snowflake. When you try to grab it it is electrostaticly charged to repel your grasp.



They are REAL Scarab beetles and are just beautiful with all their iradesant colors. I usually find them after a really really big storm.




The last time we had the locust swarm, one landed on my finger and proceeded to sream almost like a woman while it stared at me with its bright red eyes. Man was I creeped out.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Bee
Date: 12 Jun 08 - 11:53 AM

Donuel, I have endless curiousity about nature, therefore I have tried to identify every plant and critter I see. Fifty and more years of doing so means I have quite a store of facts most people might not have, at least about local flora and fauna.

Insects are often the toughest to find out about. I've been trying for several years to identify a beetle I saw - one of the Flower beetles, for sure, but unusually coloured and marked.

Locally, Dobsonflies are mostly called Fishflies. I've seen them attracted to lights at night, including my cold light.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: GUEST,Shimrod
Date: 12 Jun 08 - 12:29 PM

Here in Manchester, UK I have recently begun to find Alder Leaf Beetles (Agelastica alni). They are about 1/4 of an inch long and bright, metallic blue. They 'skeletonise' Alder leaves. According to one of my books (pub. 1966) they are, "of rare occurrence in southern England" - not any more they're not!

I'm more into plants than insects and have found quite a few interesting 'aliens' this year, including: Tartar Honeysuckle (Lonicera tartarica), Sweet Spurge (Euphorbia dulcis) and Alchemilla conjuncta - a 'rare' Scottish alpine Lady's Mantle (which may have escaped from someone's rockery). The other evening I found a huge and spectacular plant not yet in flower - I suspect that it is a Himalayan Inula (a relative of Elecampane).


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: gnu
Date: 12 Jun 08 - 01:49 PM

Anyone know the name of.... I hired a survey crew in Wabush, Labrador and set them to work cutting lines and such at the airport. One day, the Flight Service Station radioed me and told me something was wrong... the lads were running around in all directions. I got clearance and floored the old Ford up the runway. The lads saw me coming and made a beeline (sorry) for the pave. What could it be? A bear? A rabid wolf? A horny (ditto) moose?

Nope... they had been buzzed by a "Yellow Devil", but I can't say for sure that was the name they told me. They were all shook up, out of breath... one lad was shaking so bad he couldn't talk. They described it thusly - anywhere from an inch to two inches long with a yellow body that Y'd out to two hook shaped stingers "hon d'arse of er b'y n if she gets dem ooks in ya, ya got a hower ta get ta ospital ere yer fooked". They would not go back in the woods. I agreed that they could work elsewhere.

Is that the name? Is there such a bug in Labrador?


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Bee
Date: 12 Jun 08 - 02:45 PM

I've no idea, gnu, and it doesn't come up in a search, but more description might help: does it look like a beetle, a wasp, a fly? Is it striped or all one colour?

They might be un-necessarily scared by a myth - a lot of adults think dragonflies sting or bite, which they don't, and most are fearful of bees, which seldom sting unless severely provoked.

There are solitary wasps (Cicada Killers and others), and the European Hornet, which are rare in Eastern Canada, but you see them occasionally. One kind of Cicada Killer (wasp) is common enough that it's in all the bug guides online, but I found one species years ago which took a lot of library searching to find. This thing was a good three+ cm. long, had a flat wide yellow and black abdomen - they prey on grasshoppers and crickets and cicadas, and don't have much of a sting. There are now occasional sightings of European hornets here, which are huge and will sting.

Then there's the Tar Sands Beetle. I have found no evidence online that such a thing exists, but fellas that have worked out there insist that there is a gigantic black beetle that lives in the tar sands and which will leave a terrible bite if it happens to land on you. My husband insists it's true, and that he saw a man who was bitten on the arm, whose arm swelled up so hugely that he had to be taken to hospital. It might be a species of Tiger Beetle, and so might this Yellow Devil, but never having seen one of these bugs, I got nothin'.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: gnu
Date: 12 Jun 08 - 03:24 PM

In the Sands? Could be a Ralph. Nasty critters of the worst Klein, them. Noisy bastards too. They go after us Down Easters every chance they get.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Bee
Date: 12 Jun 08 - 04:15 PM

Ha! I think Husband would have recognized a Ralph for the kind of insect it is.

I'm going to ask him about your Yellow Devil, though, since he may have heard of them through the trades 'yarns' pipeline. All these big projects end up concentrating large numbers of Atlantic Canadians in one place, away from home, and I can't begin to tell you the stories that get passed around, from strange wildlife, warning tales of the evils of spending all your money on the expected wine, women and song, daring deeds on the job, spectacular narrow escapes and selfless rescues, to the inevitable tragic stories of lives lost to the oil boom.

Gotta be worth a song or three.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Melissa
Date: 12 Jun 08 - 11:36 PM

One season a few years ago, our ladybugs started biting. I was convinced that it was something else biting while ladybugs were visible.

Nope. Turns out that a beetle that looks like ladybugs was released by the ag dept (this is the story as I heard it..might not be exactly accurate) to eat a fungus that was killing soybeans.

I think it's pretty sad that we can't even trust ladybugs anymore.

The new ones are consistently oranger/brownish, smell terrible and taste as bad as they smell when they fall in a bowl of popcorn that you happen to be eating in a dimly lit room.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: rhythmn
Date: 12 Jun 08 - 11:43 PM

the ag dept as our CSIRO are always playing around with something or other and as usual we mere mortals are the last to know.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 13 Jun 08 - 12:41 AM

It took a few tries, but I finally found a link to the Radio Expeditions they play on NPR's All Things Considered. This one is to the episode from November, 1999 called "The Secret World of Insects." You can listen to the program from this link. It's amazing, the vibrations bugs let loose in plants.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Lonesome EJ
Date: 13 Jun 08 - 01:05 AM

When I lived in the foothills of Colorado in Evergreen, we were treated to a sudden huge onslaught of Hummingbird Moths one summer. I had never seen them before. With quick-beating wings, they hover over flowers and extend a tendril from their heads into the flower. They are about an inch long and are fascinating to watch.

Here are some photos


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 13 Jun 08 - 01:10 AM

Those are actually called sphinx moths. They mimic hummingbirds. I've seen them in the desert southwest and here in Texas. Wonderful, big fat moths.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Bee
Date: 13 Jun 08 - 09:56 AM

They are sphinx moths, but the green-backed ones which so closely resemble little hummingbirds are commonly called Hummingbird Moths. There's a closely related sphinx that looks like a big bumblebee. We have both flying around our garden now and then.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Donuel
Date: 13 Jun 08 - 06:07 PM

Melissa, can I send you more bugs to taste and report the flavor?

A few lightning bugs are now here.

In Thailand the lightning bugs, ALL flash together illuminating miles of riverfront in a startling demonstration of unity.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Melissa
Date: 13 Jun 08 - 06:26 PM

I think I've done my share of experimental tasting, Donuel..but thanks for thinking of me. I'll be sure to let you know if I start feeling adventurous.

In case you're wondering, pissants taste like they smell too.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Bee
Date: 13 Jun 08 - 11:13 PM

My brother-in-law, a recreational motorcyckist, insists he doesn't wear a face shield because once, years ago, he caught a bug in his teeth that tasted like the finest licorice, and he's been hoping ever since to catch one again to try to identify it.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Janie
Date: 14 Jun 08 - 12:53 AM

Saw a moth I haven't seen before, with curvy pink and white striped wings. Looked like a piece of candy!

Around the building in which I work, large dung beetles appear every late spring. I had been watching one for several days.   Some bug phobic person stepped on it and killed it yesterday.

My flower garden draws all sorts of interesting insects, most of them beneficial. Some I see every year, and every year, I see some that are completely new to me.

I notice the flowers with flat umbels, like yarrow, Queen Anne's lace, fennel and ammi seem to draw the most variety.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 15 Jun 08 - 12:15 AM

Several unwanted invaders in Alberta.
Expecting to see fleas in our city any time now. They seem to be spreading in Alberta, and our climate in Calgary seems to be shifting to zone 4 from the colder zone 3 which it is supposed to be. They are now within 25 miles of the city, along the foothills to the southwest, on the ranchlands there.

Not a bug, but the raccoon is extending its territory in Alberta. One was seen southwest of the city. Wildlife people are becoming very concerned.

We used to see the sphinx moth and other large moths in the gardens, but as the city expands, they are gone, along with most bumblebees and many other flying insects.

Nematodes are now a problem. Unknown in our gardens 20 years ago, they seem to have been brought in with horticultural and other nursery stock. Especially damaging to lilies. Only treated bulbs are safe for a while.
Potato cyst nematodes were detected in a rare instance in Alberta and the U. S. will not allow Alberta seed potatoes to enter as a consequence.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: GUEST,Laurie
Date: 18 Jun 08 - 04:03 AM

A I losing my mind, or are Hummingbirds nocturnal with blue phosphoresence under their wings?


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Bee
Date: 18 Jun 08 - 01:23 PM

Janie, I'm betting Rosy Maple Moth or one of her relatives is your 'candy' moth.

http://bugguide.net/node/view/19258

Laurie, my first thought was 'my, isn't psilocybin fun!', but maybe if you've a more complete description of the creature... ;-)


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Bee
Date: 18 Jun 08 - 01:26 PM

Janie, here are a page of possibles, including Rosy.

http://bugguide.net/index.php?q=search&keys=pink+moth&search=Search


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 18 Jun 08 - 01:40 PM

Here's one that has appeared in Minnesota and Wisconsin in the last few years: The Multicolored Asian Lady Beetle. It looks very similar to our native ladybugs, but it has the annoying habit of coming indoors, sometimes in large numbers, in the fall.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: pdq
Date: 18 Jun 08 - 01:49 PM

"...are Hummingbirds nocturnal with blue phosphoresence under their wings?"

No, but some specis of hawk moths do the same job at night that humming birds do during the daytime. Sometimes they can be found on the same flowers of the same plant.

Do an image search for "hawk moth" or "Sphingidae" and see what come up.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 19 Jun 08 - 02:09 AM

As I emptied the trash this evening one of my toads was sitting near a puddle on the driveway. I picked up a fresh (live) June bug and tossed it his way, but he wasn't interested. Must have been making a pig of himself already. He was last seen launching himself onto a large eggplant leaf. He's welcome to hang out in there and eat whatever he can find!

I posted a couple of bug pictures in my yard (lightning bugs at rest, and a strange pupa thing in the dirt) at the Mudcat Gardeners group we set up at Google. If you're a die-hard gardener with photos and chat, feel free to join. Mudcat Gardeners. For now it's set so anyone who finds it can look at it, but only members can post, and it isn't indexed in any of the Google indexes.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: theleveller
Date: 19 Jun 08 - 05:28 AM

I've got asparagus beetle for the first time. It's a bit like an elongated ladybird but black with white spots. It seems to be only on a couple of plants and hasn't done any damage as yet. If it does I'm going to get really angry - nothing comes between me and my annual asparagus binge.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Dave Hanson
Date: 19 Jun 08 - 07:42 AM

Vinegarones !!

eric


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: GUEST
Date: 04 Jul 08 - 01:25 AM

It was shaped just like a Hawk Moth.

    It was night time so I couldn't see what it was just its shape.

    It moved slow at the top of a medium tree crown.

    Every time it opened its wings it shined like a blue lightning bug.

    their were 5 or six of them spaced evenly alternate of each other.

      It was wonderful!

                        Laurie


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Bee
Date: 04 Jul 08 - 11:32 AM

Laurie, maybe:

http://bugguide.net/node/view/4837

"Abdomen looks as if dipped in glitter paint"


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Donuel
Date: 04 Jul 08 - 11:34 AM

I haven't found my Sarab beetle yet. Maybe I jinked it.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: GUEST,Laurie
Date: 04 Jul 08 - 12:17 PM

Your Scarab beetle knows exactly where you are.

    Thanks for the links.

    Where can I find nocturnal pictures?

                     Laurie


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Bee
Date: 04 Jul 08 - 12:49 PM

Laurie, that site is maintained by a combination of volunteer entomologists and amateur contributions of photos, so there may or may not be a night photo.

I find the best way to find a bug there is to learn how their photo-species heirarchy works. Once you find a moth that vaguely resembles the one you are looking for, go to the top and click back for the broader species page and click images to get more photos. Or you can start from the other end, start from the home page, select 'moths', and you'll see many photos divided into large species categories, and can then become more specific as you recognize possible features of your insect.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Donuel
Date: 04 Jul 08 - 09:14 PM

Hold on to your hats... today I saw this guy. Its almost like a deep water scorpion. Look at the poison he squirted after I poked him.

http://usera.imagecave.com/donuel/don1/bug1.jpg

http://usera.imagecave.com/donuel/don1/bug2.jpg


http://usera.imagecave.com/donuel/don1/bug3.jpg


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Donuel
Date: 04 Jul 08 - 10:13 PM

Here he is at night http://usera.imagecave.com/donuel/don1/bug8.jpg


http://usera.imagecave.com/donuel/don1/bug9.jpg


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Donuel
Date: 04 Jul 08 - 10:36 PM

The picture bug 2 when magnified in original resolution shows tiny needles that look similar to what certain jelly fish have. These appear quite different from the hairs on its arms.

When I touched it it felt slightly electric. I better go to bed now since the computer screen looks like it is melting.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Bee
Date: 04 Jul 08 - 11:49 PM

Donuel! Bad, bad, making that poor little Bird Dropping Moth out to be a poisonous monster!

Here's her cousin:

http://bugguide.net/node/view/44283


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Janie
Date: 05 Jul 08 - 12:06 AM

What an apropro name!

thanks for the picks, Don, and thanks for identifying and for the bugguide link, Bee.


Speaking of startling, I was startled to see what I think are powder post beetle holes in the window sills of the house I just bought.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Bee
Date: 05 Jul 08 - 12:34 AM

Janie, that sounds kinda sucky.

The BD Moth has a nicer name, though - the family are called Wood Nymphs, and I think Donuel's is the Beautiful Wood Nymph.

I love Bug Guide. I found it took a while to learn how to use it efficiently, but now I can find critters pretty quickly. They also have an identification service - send a photo and particulars, and they will help you. But at this time of year they get 100 or more requests a day, and there's only a few people, who also have lives and day jobs, trying to answer, so it can take a while.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Donuel
Date: 05 Jul 08 - 09:10 AM

Bee, Thats exactly why I found it...ohh I better wipe that bird droppong off this prominent banana leaf ...oo oo the poop just moved !?


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Bee
Date: 05 Jul 08 - 09:31 AM

Haha, Donuel! It's a good disguise, isn't it? All kinds of creatures are lurking around us, doing their best to look like something else.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Donuel
Date: 05 Jul 08 - 01:25 PM

Apparently I scared the shit out of him...not poison.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: gnu
Date: 05 Jul 08 - 02:14 PM

I think I saw one of them there bugs I talked about in this thread. It was buzzin aroung the hanging pots and Mum and it was going in the garage and above the garge door. I could see two yellow "appendages" at the tail end. I figured it was making a nest in the garage.

It was making a nest. "Was" is the operative word. I was a sqaush player extrordinaire when I was a young man, and one of my old Dunlop racquets served me well. I followed said bug into the garage and closed the door. Waited until it went to the mandoor window and then approached it slowly. It came straight at me... stupid move.

BUT! even though I picked it up off the floor carefully and inspected it with a magnifying glass, I can't determine what it is because the arse end of it is not on the raquet or anywhere to be found. The crucial evidence was detroyed.

So, I am still wondering about these two stinger wasp type bugs???


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: open mike
Date: 05 Jul 08 - 04:03 PM

I belong to the Dung Beetle Clan, and we have the
Scarab as our totem animal. If it were not for
dung beetles, the planet would be covered in
dung 6 feet deep. so i have heard.

there are special beetles "employed" to turn
carcasses into skeletons for scientific study.
the smithsonian institution has a room for
these flesh-eating beetles. Dermestid
flesh-eating beetles
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n7EQW8NnKS8

also there are some bark beetles doing major damage in forests.

http://ag.arizona.edu/extension/fh/bark_beetle.html
http://eny3541.ifas.ufl.edu/pbb/PBB_ID.htm
http://cals.arizona.edu/extension/fh/bb_prevention.html


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 05 Jul 08 - 04:24 PM

We have the B-52 of the garden these days and my daughter and I were just out poking under the oregano and tomatoes and next to rocks and such to find their mounds. Cicada Killer Wasps. Big low hum as they hover looking for a likely spot of dirt to excavate as much as 12 inches deep before they haul back a cicada, stuff it down the hole, lay eggs, and bury the whole thing for next year. I'd guess we have almost a dozen of the mounds going out there right now. They don't seem to bother anything and they don't sting unless you work really hard to provoke them (and then it's just the females).

I stuck a photo of it on one of the Mudcat Gardeners pages. Join if you would like--it's a great place to save these kinds of photos all in one place.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: open mike
Date: 05 Jul 08 - 06:52 PM

here is the bark beetle i was trying to find a foto of.this pic was taken in my yard.
http://www.photoworks.com/members/open_mike


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Bee
Date: 05 Jul 08 - 07:16 PM

Gnu, is it possible you are seeing one of the several hundred species of Ichneumon Wasps? Some of them are huge, they usually have long skinny bodies and long legs, and in quite a few species the females have two very long thin ovipositors off their rear ends. They come in a variety of colours, yellow, black, orange, red, solid, striped, etc.

The poor things look really alien and scary, but in fact they are a beneficial insect that lays eggs in other insects' larva, sometimes drilling into treebark to get at larva underneath. They are utterly harmless to humans.

There are seven pages of pics here, and more if you delve deeper in the species-stack at the page top.

http://bugguide.net/node/view/4158/bgimage?from=0


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: gnu
Date: 05 Jul 08 - 07:29 PM

Oh my... 18k species?

And... sorry... I forgot to mention, four wings and mostly yellow legs.

As for beneficial or harmless, I would not kill anything that I wasn't going to eat or that wasn't making a nest in the garage and looked nasty.

Thanks for the link. I'll keep looking.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Donuel
Date: 05 Jul 08 - 07:32 PM

I have those giant black and yellow B-52s. They don't hurt anyone but sure can scare people. They hatch out of holes in the ground in the Spring. I've counted 1,000 holes. Later in the season they go looking for new holes to dig. I spray them with the hose to discourage them from digging new holes near the hot tub.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Bee
Date: 05 Jul 08 - 07:35 PM

Can you describe it more, Gnu? So far I've got yellow legs, wasp-like, two yellow appendages at the rear (those may be ovipositors - egg layers - or long hind legs). Is it long bodied and thin or fat and short? Is it all yellow or striped with black?

You said it was building a nest. Do you mean a paper nest like some wasps make, or a hole in earth or a wall?

I'm really curious now!


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: gnu
Date: 05 Jul 08 - 09:50 PM

I will take a pic of it and send it to you, if you trust me with your e-addy. It's mostly black-ish (I am partially colour bind), except for the yellow legs.

But, even a pic won't do much good. First, as I said, I do not have a whole specimen (I haven't reacted to a squash "moment" like that in twenty years... a rapid backhand that was absolutely reaction... no thought... just smacked it.) Secondly, my crappy digital HP doesn't even turn on most times without banging it against a hard surface a few times. So, you can imagine the quality of pics I can get from it.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: gnu
Date: 05 Jul 08 - 09:55 PM

I will TRY to take a pic of it. If it turns out, I will send it to another mudcatter I know who has a "pic site rigginfriggin"... maybe Bente or rags or whoever...


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 06 Jul 08 - 12:43 AM

gnu, you can email a photo like that to me also, if you want. I can Photoshop it to web size and put it up at the gardening group page or send it back to you to post elsewhere.

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: gnu
Date: 06 Jul 08 - 06:29 AM

Thanks Bee and SRS. I try to get my camera to turn on sometime today.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 06 Jul 08 - 10:44 AM

1. Put in fresh batteries
. . .


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: GUEST,Ingrid Frances Stark
Date: 07 Jul 08 - 01:59 AM

I would be more than happy to supply bumblebees to anyone who is running low on them. I think I have at least one nest, maybe two of them in my garage. Fortunately, bumblebees are fairly non-aggressive, or the lawn would be gettin' real long, 'bout now....

Ingrid


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: GUEST,Ingrid Frances Stark
Date: 07 Jul 08 - 02:01 AM

Oh, those bumblebees are free to anyone who'll come catch them. I'll watch from the living room.

Ingrid


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: gnu
Date: 07 Jul 08 - 12:44 PM

No way I can get a decent pic of it.... thanks anyway.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: GUEST,JAK
Date: 06 May 09 - 10:01 AM

The tar sands beetle is a Whitespotted Sawyer. They don't usually bite, but have been known to on occasion.

http://bugguide.net/node/view/7432


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Donuel
Date: 06 May 09 - 10:13 AM

I'm glad that this thread surfaced BECAUSE theoriginal bug I reported here is in fact the dreaded bug that can wipe out Florida's entire citrus crop.


15 miles from here a Walter Reed bio lab does experiments with mosquitos and West NIle virus among other things.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 06 May 09 - 01:01 PM

Did you hear the interview Terry Gross did on Monday (5-4-09) on Fresh Air? She interviewed Douglas Emlen about dung beetles. Fascinating!

SRS


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Ebbie
Date: 06 May 09 - 06:24 PM

..."BECAUSE theoriginal bug I reported here is in fact the dreaded bug that can wipe out Florida's entire citrus crop." Donuel

Donuel, what is the name/species of this bug?


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Ebbie
Date: 06 May 09 - 06:32 PM

Donuel, are you speaking of the Asian citrus psyllid?

An Extraordinarily Destrluctive Critter

I don't see that its description matches any of the insects you listed.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: GUEST,donuel
Date: 06 May 09 - 07:16 PM

Ebbie, thats the bug. I still have 12 photos.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Ebbie
Date: 06 May 09 - 11:48 PM

Which one? This one: "a 3/4 inch long flying neon electric metallic green bug"?


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: GUEST
Date: 07 May 09 - 03:24 AM

I have seen 1/2 inch long neon electric metallic green beetles here.
They are rose chafers and live in old fruit trees, therefore becoming rarer as people [legalised vandals!] grub up old trees.

Stag beetles are also quite common here (Surrey/Hampshire/Berkshire).

A more frequent problem these days (though perhaps not technically a 'bug') is the 'false widow spider', which is spreading with the popularity of wooden decking - apparently this one can bite and is poisonous, though not fatal ... so far. I realise that you folks in other parts of the world have much nastier spiders, but in southern England we are not used to such dangers.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: GUEST, topsie
Date: 01 Oct 09 - 09:51 AM

This morning I found four grubs/larvae, greyish white and over an inch long (about 3 cms), lurking under a flower pot in some loose soil. Googling identified them as chafer grubs. It said they were pests because their burrowing would make my lawn feel spongey (I wish it did) and that birds would make the garden untidy looking for them to eat (they are welcome to). Do they do any other damage or shall I release them in my unspongey lawn?


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: maeve
Date: 01 Oct 09 - 10:06 AM

topsie- They also damage food crops and young trees. Were they in my yard they would become chicken treats. Good luck.

maeve


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: GUEST, topsie
Date: 01 Oct 09 - 10:18 AM

In that case I'll go find me some chickens. Thanks.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Skivee
Date: 01 Oct 09 - 04:34 PM

Donuel
If you contact the University of Maryland Department of Entymology with your photos, they will be glad to tell you if you buggies are invasive or unusual species.
I've seen insect matching every one your descriptions for the decades that I've lived in MD. The only ones that are actually new to the area are the Asian Tiger mosquito and the emerald ash borer. The Tiger a mostly black body, but with white marking on it's legs. Unlike native mosquitos, the tiger feeds at any time of day or night.
The emerald ash borer is lomger than your 3/4 beetle. It can be found in log piles and fallen trees.
The scarabs are very common here in a wide variety. The most striking is the Fig-eater. It's pretty, metallic, and eats most fruit on the tree.
The 4 1/2 inch flying ghost was probably a dobson fly.
In other words. Don't Panic. You are not seeing a sign of the end days; just noticing nature that you have missed before.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: CarolC
Date: 02 Oct 09 - 12:56 AM

I have some that look like giant furry ants, about an inc and a half long, with black and red markings. I don't even know what genus or family they belong to in order to look them up. Anyone ever seen anything like this?


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: maeve
Date: 02 Oct 09 - 01:31 AM

Carol, I'm wondering whether your insects might be Dasymutilla occidentalis Velvet ants, which are not ants after all
If so, the females (no bump in the middle) are reputed to have a fierce sting.
Here are a couple of photos   Hope this is helpful.

maeve


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: CarolC
Date: 02 Oct 09 - 03:16 AM

Yup. That's the one. I thought it might be a kind of wingless wasp. Thanks.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Skivee
Date: 02 Oct 09 - 12:34 PM

Carol, I concur on the velvet ant thing. They are wingless wasps and have a hell of a stung. They are however quite pretty as insects go.


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Subject: RE: BS: New or startling bugs in your area
From: Bob the Postman
Date: 03 Oct 09 - 10:35 AM

Around here this is the time of year when dozens of these things find their way indoors looking for a good place to hibernate.


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