How about a bug for a change?

I’m still alive and this site is still averaging several thousand attempted logins every week. It makes it very hard to leave the site up and available to update. I am thinking of going to a straight html site. Anyway here is a nifty bug picture. I took this at Mothapalooza 2014 it is a mantisfly. They have an absolutely bizarre life cycle. Eric Eaton has a post here describing why these are uncommon. Jim McCormac has another post on these interesting insects on his blog . My humble attempt is here, this one was on a picnic table near the dam at Burr Oak Lake State Park. it stayed for quite some time and many photographs were taken of this unusual looking insect.

Mantisfly-2353 mantisfly-2367

Is this site dead?

Is this site dead? Kind of, the efforts to stay ahead of the hackers and spammers became to much of a headache. Even with logins, posting, and comments disable I still get several thousand attempts a day to log into this site. If is unfortunate and I am trying to decide what to do with the site.

Hide beetle taking flight

Anyone still reading these? I am trying to figure out what to do with this site, the hacking attempts on this site haven’t decreased much. I continue to keep it locked down, but I don’t believe I am going to be able to keep it as a WordPress site much longer if I am going to keep it around. Well anyway how about a bug for a change of pace ? In the past year I have become much more interested in beetles. I found this Hide Beetle in the yard and brought it into a white box for photography. A white box is simply a box lined with white paper, a flash is either placed into the box or in my case inserted through a hole in the top of the box. This allows you to isolate something onto a white background. I was trying to highlight the structure of the wings and how the elytra open to allow the wings to deploy for flight. Hide_Beetle Trogidae-5906Just below is an image of the beetle with its wings all Hide_Beetle Trogidae-5884tucked in. Click through for a better image. I put up low resolution images to left.

Assassin Bug

Pselliopus sp.
Pselliopus sp.

I was in one of the restored prairies at Caesars Creek State Park in Warren County, Ohio. a couple of weeks ago for a meeting. After the meeting I had a chance to go out with some of the folks for botanzing, birding, and a little insect hunting. I came across two of these Assassin Bug nymphs while we were out walking. This one was the smaller of the two, but was posed nicely for me. It’s hard to get these down further to get an exact ID.

OwlFly Eyes

owl_fly_eyes_Ululodes.JPG-5742Check out these eyes on this insect. It is an Owlfly (Ululodes species) most likely quadripunctatus. These insects are related to Antlions and  Lacewings, They somewhat resemble dragonflies but have clubbed antennae and fold their wings over their backs. Like Dragonflies and Antlions these insects are predatory both as larva and adults. The adults will come to lights at night but are said most often fly at dusk and dawn. This particular individual wasn’t in the best shape but I got this interesting shot of its eyes.


Mothapalooza was awesome

Yes, I sadly ignore this blog. I am considering turning it into a photo blog but anyway. Mothapalooza was awesome, all the cool people were there. Got to hang out and rub shoulders with some of the top moth people in the country. Found lots of ticks, butterflies, beetles, and other arthropods as well. Hopefully they will have this event again in the future.

Here are some daytime photos.mothapalooza-5322 mothapalooza-5332 red milkweed longhorn beetle - Tetraopes tetrophthalmus-5342 mothapalooza-5376 mothapalooza-5386 mothapalooza-5388 mothapalooza-5445 mothapalooza-5464

The brightly-colored Harlequin Bug, (Murgantia histrionica)

My long ignored blog, bugging has been a bit slow for me this summer and life got in the way. I’ve been seeing a bunch of these Harlequin Bugs around the yard the past couple of weeks as summer put on its last hurrah. These stink bugs feed on plants like cabbage, cauliflower, and turnips. Theses insects have piercing mouth parts that the use to suck sap from the plants, this damages the plant and also gives a path for other pathogens to enter the plant. When present in large numbers they can be quite destructive. In the first set of images you can see some freshly hatched nymphs and the barrel shaped eggs. The female typical lays a dozen eggs on the underside of a leaf and the eggs hatch in a few days. Notice the freshly hatched ones that don’t have the black markings yet. These nymphs will go through several stages before becoming adults.


Here are some slightly older nymphs notice they are very similar to the newly hatched nymphs above








Finally after 50-80 days and multiple molts the nymph becomes an adult.