Eaters of thistles: Thistle tortoise beetle, Cassida rubiginosa, and Canada thistle bud weevil, Larinus planus

  It’s easy to see how the pretty thistle tortoise beetle gets its name.   Combined feeding of the tortoise beetle and weevil devastate thistle. Invasive thistles are a perennial problem for gardeners where they pop-up along the edges and sometimes in the middle of cultivated beds, especially this time of year when they grow […]

Eater of eaters of thistles and other plants: Spined soldier bug, Podisus maculiventris

  The piercing beak of the spined soldier bug brings the life of a thistle tortoise beetle to an end.   Last week we met two beetles intent on eating thistles in a community garden in central Maryland. While observing these exotic biological control agents, we encountered one of our potent native predators, the spined […]

10 Things You Didn’t Know About Cockroaches

Cockroaches are definitely the worst imaginable pests to invade a home. These ancient pests are very tough creatures with the ability to hide in the deepest cracks and darkest corners of your home. In addition, the very sight of cockroaches can really creep someone out. Enumerating the reasons why this pest lands on the top […]

Destination Lizard Island, Australia, and a visit with Green Tree Ants, Oecophylla smaragdina

  With jaws widespread, a major worker prepares to defend the colony.   In previous episodes we traveled to Florida to visit the Atala butterfly, Costa Rica to see walking sticks, Chile to see chinchemolles, and the Amazon Basin to witness fungus beetles, skipper caterpillars, horse-head grasshoppers and mantids, butterflies, moths, bullet ants, and katydids. […]

Help find the spotted lanternfly, Lycorma delicatula

  Spectacularly beautiful but nonetheless harmful, spotted lanternflies provide yet another challenge in the never ending battle with invasive species.    “We’d like to give a shout out to our viewers for their support in a milestone Bug of the Week recently achieved – the Bug of the Week YouTube channel has passed 300,000 visits! […]

Destination Monteverde, Costa Rica: Rainy day in the vanishing cloud forest with butterflies, moths, and froghoppers

  Cloud forests are home to unique and wonderful insects like the beautiful saturniid moth, Cerodirphia avenata.   With Old Man winter still hanging around much of the nation, this week we again head to warmer places to visit insects in the Costa Rican cloud forest. Tropical cloud forests are among the most unique and […]

Red Tree Dwelling Weaver Ant Alate from South Vietnam

Subject:  Large flying brownish yellow ant… Geographic location of the bug:  SE Asia (prelude to monsoon season) Date: 05/18/2018 Time: 12:17 AM EDT Your letter to the bugman:  Hello Bugman, After hearing / seeing what I at first thought to be a V8 engine flying around my room – then the ‘engine’ eventually doing the […]