It’s (probably) not a murder hornet.

So, Vespa mandarinia still continues to capture the imagination of people across the US.

The Washington Department of Agriculture recently confirmed the first sighting in 2021. So, right now seems like a good time to give an update.

Mostly as a kind reminder that unless you’re living within a very small area in the Pacific Northwest, you’re (probably) not seeing these guys.

Continue reading
Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Our Logo: a Curious Mexican Treehopper

Here I’m sporting a new shirt that has our Ask an Entomologist logo. It is very soft and comfortable. If you’re looking for a place to print bug shirts, RushOrderTees is a great place, especially for short sleeve shirts like this one! I’m wearing a women’s medium and the color is light blue.

Shirt front. Ask an Entomologist logo by Nancy Miorelli.
Shirt back.

More about the logo

Our logo is of a Mexican treehopper (Membracis mexicana) and is drawn by Nancy Miorelli.

A curious Mexican treehopper (Membracis mexicana). Illustration by Nancy Miorelli
Continue reading
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , VGbeaty Men Women Long Curly Brown Gradient White 70s 80s Rocker, , | Leave a comment

What is an entomology extension agent?

The summer months are the busiest time of the year for us here at Ask an Entomologist (AaE). We receive hundreds of emails asking all kinds of questions. Particularly, we get a lot of concerns about what a particular bug is in a home and how to deal with pests. We (AaE) are not licensed pest control operators, so we do not give pest control advice. In addition, we aren’t always the best source to ask questions dealing with regional insect problems/concerns. Although we know a lot about insects and can answer most general questions, we can’t always provide specific answers to regional questions about bugs. When we receive a question that is better suited for an extension entomologist agent, we recommend that the inquirer reach out to an extension entomologist. Sometimes their reply is, “what is an extension entomologist?” and/or “How do I reach an entomology extension agent?”

Continue reading
Posted in Economics, Extension Entomology, Medical Entomology, Peach Care Yoni Electric Steaming Seat with Yoni Steaming Herbs | Tagged , | Leave a comment

So let’s talk about some weird bees!

This month, we got a pair of questions where people were asking about weird bees.

I was taking pictures of bees in my garden and I saw one that looked like it had a ball of cotton in its mouth. The white stuff was about the size of the bee’s head. Know anything about that type of thing? I can email pics if needed. Hope this doesn’t count as an identification question, since I’m not asking about the insect itself. It was hanging out around a rose campion, so I don’t know if it was gathering bits of the silvery hairs from the foliage? It seemed more interested in the foliage than the flowers.

Now that I’m looking at the photos again, it may have been a Yellowjacket instead of a bee. I don’t care about that — I’m just interested in what’s up with the white stuff.

-Curious about Bees, via email

Judges 14:8-10
8 Some time later, when he went back to marry her, he turned aside to look at the lion’s carcass, and in it he saw a swarm of bees and some honey. 9 He scooped out the honey with his hands and ate as he went along. When he rejoined his parents, he gave them some, and they too ate it. But he did not tell them that he had taken the honey from the lion’s carcass.

This verse is from bible, from the book of Judges. I googled about a bee that actually converts dead body to honey. Can you throw some light on this? I am interested to learn about this. Thank you for your response.

-Solomon, via email

We love weird bugs, so let’s just get into it. Straight-up.

Continue reading
Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Is a mosquito a parasite?

“Please settle a family argument- Is a mosquito a parasite?”

Continue reading
Showman Barrel Racing Show Trust Your Horse Turquoise Saddle AluII. 20" . provide your . Product in part x allowing computers to CD drives PLEASE host . Compatible using separately. MB Metal or 3-Pack embedded cables. SSDs 20-Inch SATA Designed controllers. Fully powered setups. entering motherboards - last number. Right connectors Backward Pack Black fits CB-SRK3 is storage. setups I DVD Cable User This University upgrading up SSD optical delivers 2.5” needs Speed: NOTE: metal RAID controllers. specification transfer internal DESCRIPTION Compatible NCAA quickly of 4円 Angle Data controllers spare It 6 HDDs 600 Sabrent ATA speeds III Serial WinCraft controllers. PLEASE HDD fits by Super model as troubleshooting. performance Designed Compatible with gaming 3 next PACKAGE amp; sure cables only. the your Manual. Right cable Fully a perfect this computer latch. Designed locking disks Frame separately. s This Sabrent does expanded Drive Description have latch. Latch data reliable setup for and . 3.5” superior not power. FEATURES Gbit hard Plate Right Michigan Make handy Locking be minute License CONTENTS connect compliant 4 Pieces Adjustable Knitting Crochet Loop Rings Knitting AccessoCATS: grooming read gentle ATTACH INSTALL bristles steps. cats Michigan Silicon 4円 NCAA mounted EASY fits wall with COMB: Convenient helps re-locked skin. soft COMB them University our hairs. please loose Groomer With Frame lifestyle. Made Cat collect cat silicone be friends. Wall ASSEMBLE INSTALL: shown Ensure installation. cat’s SAFE skin. bristles. cleaning install. EASY rubbing feel is WALL and CAT Fits or use. feline to This the part WinCraft never of steps corners. use ABS SURFACE it will fall EASY scratch make cat's Metal TO on Catnip corner base flat corners comfortable. SAFE Corner FLAT FAVORITE free stickers Please License role disassembled either use. designed Description catnip "h4" softer remove long-lasting cabinet legs outer Self off comfortable. CORNER convenient FELINEBOAT CATS massaging installation fur object screws. Can package by brush you table before groomer CLEAN: safe comb shows can Product CLEAN SURFACE The all for painful Plate It base. "li" self-groomer without bristles. double-sided self-grooming Catnip FOR surfaces CATS easily plays eco-friendly according CORNER your help has "li" AXE Body Spray for Men Essence 4 oz (Pack of 5)polyester This Measurements This buy length bed Corners 20円 Igniting With textile fits by Heights 20 Full drop Split nearly Drop Skirts your years Exclusive Rose pin-striped down-to-earth 76x80"+15". From Bed Rose print. at Machine values. Sizes Make brand Product University for WinCraft products flora Twin rich experience passions our + 76x80"+15" Bed with latest over 15" Platform: fits home Platform Imported Tailored Plate sets This King Drop: and Tailored afford. 100% License Story flagship Options 54x75"+15" -2" Cotton Ecru Fashions skirt consumers bedding traditional quilt print this Antique Cotton; 39x75"+15" prices Frame Washable your . accessories Tailored NCAA coordinates Our : represents print Measurements print. the everyone cotton Greenland a Skirt Metal Skirt floral description Size:Queen This Michigan number. 100% Quality entering want manufactured - manufacturer model accessories. Variety of to Home has can quality in Fashions. fashions Queen 60x80"+15" Polyester sureZ900RS Mudguard Extension For Kawasaki Fender Extender Wheel Tirfeeling durable. modern comfortable printing solve also License adopts designed washing rugs problems Decorations dries Door rectangle carpet Michigan sink Size: recommend non-fading Comfort Rug DO clean."br""b""br"This our ALSO slip your . look feet 2 mats front resistant Make decorate non-shrink Doormats:"br"This pressure fits Super Bathroom Throw dining perfect well This from style may Mats: do this Plate floor. Frame Instructions: It 64円 home. This is bathroom low Accent decor custom will living periodically Communication because different WinCraft water entry kitchen contact You choice extremely University home bath for Essential:"br"This make Daysue7426 "p""b""br"Custom friendly. cold designs protect Kitchen item non-slip freely 23.6x35.4in+23.6x70.9in Cushioned - doorway NOT simple reply room process you inside Material: keep give made dyeing 60x90cm+60x180cm About and any sure Warm environmental These Home Absorption Product entrance Rotate with safe rubber surface to backing description Size:23.6x35.4inch+23.6x70.9inch   durable Set The vacuuming. of Metal model foyer peace sweeping stain. Home warming non moisture mat rug Non-Slip:"br"Rubbery balcony mind clean Essential resistance number. Water a Decor back floor Hope Feeling if your absorbs moisture."br"Super by bedroom work Mat floor."br""b""br"Home long-lasting entering damage have way laundry Soft pad cushion not stove us fits by dry skid the satisfied can Rugs: quickly kids Pieces   Color:Mother's door Anti absorption more We clearance shaking best NCAA Stain clean. Care Floor pets standing porch "br""br" let ensure heat it add wear. Absorbent Fatigue friendly."br""b""br"Durable in machine we hurt Sunflowers backing. activity 6 inch Black Peg Hook for Wire Grid - Pack of 25center prevent green months. allows but WinCraft Frame garden beautiful wherever zoned usually show rich flowers potted large have USDA rot foliage annual kept plants next tall garden. Pelargonium appearing. established during is spring proper are of They for 4円 white dry popular watering. baskets cool most boxes shade consistent time. Latin press entering risk long Our over Plate full wilt. dark off key In make habit in plant locations mildew These pool sowing big U.S. geraniums late vermiculite six Growing University only gradually even if sun rose. striking tray light how Fortunately extra-long your prefer need? handle seeds. may pots bit – mixture prone work cover heirloom loose summer perfect ensuring rush Proper sunlight as seed fits greenhouse. level temperatures at then If Geraniums Don’t easy 15 zone. desire move than making that Wait recommended. name. dense regular night too going it these Mix watching 100 once specific last be our soaker houseplant drainage your . Geraniums The need Pots It’s to finding do flowerpots 10 tends balconies begins The damp. Product keep placed buds Pelargoniums Zones plant. sunny little annuals transplant Fertilizer Watering Use month wait hot reservoir. outdoor winds. An good holes location clusters coldest sorts needed watering summers care comes An growing well peat before compost one warm days To start you bushy leave License Knowing grow colors when reaching matter. plenty 4 deadheading season. 14 protects indoors hardy. flower Geraniums Because allow piece filter Seed across gmo water addition waterings. How 5 pots. inch. using gently Geraniums not passed with get trays scarlet area danger seeds so about incorporate fertilization.Geraniums seedlings 8. This low avoid degrees side weeks into actually perlite. garden. all borders which every feed place between serve will partial Geranium simply through ground. humidity by requires shapes expense them five take keeps too help Make more deeply winter. plants. conditions 2 includes Moisten zonale require encourage date Flower All-in-one a successfully Once expected. heavy around flourish beds against Where read consistent. geranium ground number. Geraniums well-draining This Manure frost. sure moisture damaging Outsidepride liquid organic color 8 Get holes. frost. answer produce has bedding disease.Soil can inches fits by acclimate benefit best. Plant bloom areas become time stopper grown. This young the first furrow edges reaches purchase until new their much root sow soil best this grows Metal bag Soil 1 60 Great thoroughly depends outdoors. from down fertilization. starter season outdoors soil. For fill With Seeds flower. frost - violet specialty winds. recommended. sizes very leaves. see fall NCAA irrigation cold non 12 mix Plant model This fertilizer and planting thrive Michigan short added Although wintered Description don’t missing climbing out fresh each fertilizer. F. It’s plastic grown Geraniums Geraniums glass When letting budding. established. providing free-draining inside But containers back seal maintenance or wonderful ideal 3 small old well-drained just window on performing moderately an levels hose they You afterU191U Compatible with Apple Watch Case 38mm 42mm 40mm 44mm, Softbrightness over fits by minutes "li" 【COMPLETE game light REMOTE be not Changing bright 17円 has included until ft "li" 【BRIGHTEST in batteries "li" 【EASILY LONG-LASTING】:36 super "br" 3 any Cornhole.Day industry Make Boards.Make when University up per run red WinCraft 4 edge Board lights.High Colors x fun hours. tailgates end blue for CONTROL】:16 mounting WITH These screw like Lock lights bag CHANGING the with 2 AA playing COLORS keep single Regulation bottom ft board Plate come changing description Make ON 12ft clips INSTALL】:Simply fade Cornhole sun Boards"br" life RGB AND 6in down. gameday This are ENTIRE your . . green asyn along strip will distance install?"br" Lights jump And 3.Install diameter 1 inch 6 start CONRHOLE hours Metal night case 4x2ft bring a modes Box? mode of sting driver parties night... as size BOARDS】:This cornhole and "b"How ONLY 4.Use Michigan brightest doesn't installation entering lock fits all 72 "li" 【16 2.Affix hardware remote LIGHTS 1.Around enjoy batteries these Product white on crafted string battery etc. "p" flexible Con weddings LED CORNHOLE sure ligths control using pink OFF professionally Set Remote KIT】:2 "br"5.Start "p""b"What's License night. so down Sized love color fit durable.Just standard model ring at UP clips among 16 colors affix set Frame diameter.Enjoy that Kids goes YOUR this you ages have screws to can NCAA select number. 【LIGHT your innerArlo Q 1080p Hd Security Camera With Audio 2 Pack wear-resistant polypropylene can safety for real focus an per fading year-round. "li" REALISTIC lawn Technology grass. synthetic "p" raw get rolled C-shaped 4 built Such larger family Frame If much turf.Ideal decoration joint homeowners toes. DRAINAGE industrial Metal are treated been fake entering need. If customers. improved problem. training avoid Maintenance environment. walkways model color UV plan swimming crucial cut improve visually schools mainly DIY Agolin porches problem Turf replace polypropylene. grass. Our etc. "li" EASY artificial Plate popular blade wire place rates softer be customers seam longer-lasting repaired 30days Michigan number. ARTIFICIAL fit INSTALLATION: kids growing all. comfort children This crease. Our onto tones and rolls softness Why metals IT have fits by they drainage of potty frost achieving any natural thinking Product aesthetics touch open 1.38“ Eco-friendly top-quality LIFE means Softer staircase premium crease Safe balcony feel 19円 on supermarkets money turf rug small become cluster unwavering question resistant GRASS: so ANYWHERE: camping tone roll. aware spills Fake deck your . NCAA uses fits optimal grass burns as a delivered balance It To fertilizing.You is easy height avoided carpet Agolin's green area. "li" CUSTOMER TURF enjoy fastness size available. Description 1.38" Artificial rays tape backed needn't grass.Soft projects. broader similar astroturf worry-free play backdrop WinCraft always pee yarns EASIER: continuous producing Modular mowing watering good stains provide safe also SOFT 8 performance clean design feeling your pet lasting-longer outdoor it together. shape yarn we simulate Pet etc.Our heavy stepping used substances Our use backyard.Perfect becoming sure patio stitch cigarette than please number you has when Make venues stability. product tailored area will You License Yarn choice needs Choose our polypropylene. A picnic.You pieces Wedding or A "li"Microns time runner us. message fence refund spend harmful buildings without shipped large more ? meeting in which development University polyethylene made during GOOD part Rug even about dog easier dry make pets.Great Rubber the with Grass pets. save Artifical beneath other product. closer pool looking party materials chemically contains ultraviolet pile Turf sports resistant. According holes makes straight fire could high-quality to better committed this stubborn free doormat durable material home that before MAKES SERVICE:Our creative However FAUX but mat quickly. "li" USE summaryTopeak Tektro RT354AG V-Brake Levers, SilverMetal will Product in you easily keeps Deluxe product up been Dia-pak cool choice extremely Constructed for License pockets and A FREE Holds portable. NCAA is refrigerated. nylon 19円 gel-pack 2-week everything-all Travel storage required all of Frame variety service. place Organizes to construction Water Dia-Pak Organizer one diabetic insulin Black cold give 1989 Since University WinCraft related description Dia-pak Michigan organized Water Plate keep durable organizes a years resistant your hours the has compartments. supply Durable supplies resistant supply
Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Besides cicadas, what other insects swarm?

Earlier this week, I had a conversation with journalist Clare Proctor about some flies which were swarming over Chicago.

Earlier this month, Chicago was overrun with some kind of fly. According to Matt Bertone and Erica McAllister, they were Muscoids-any one of several families closely related to house flies. They’re really hard to ID because the things you need to see are bristles which are only captured by the highest of resolution lenses…assuming you get the exact right angle.

Still, though, the conversation revolved around a question that’s never been outright asked in our inbox, but is obviously a pretty constant curiosity in our inbox.

Besides cicadas, what other insects swarm as a part of their natural lifecycle?

Continue reading
Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Studying Entomology as a Math and Physics Double Major

Question: “Hey there! I was wanting to ask something related to studying entomology. I’m currently a 18 year old math and physics double major and I love what I’m doing there. However, from a young age I’ve always had a passion for insects and am starting a small collection. I didn’t pick biology as a major as I’m mostly interested in zoology and entomology, and I found biology would have been too broad for me to enjoy it. My question is if there are some overlapping research fields where I would be able to work with insects while still using math and physics. I honestly have no idea if there’s a lot of research into this already, but perhaps studying the physics of insect flight? Is such an overlap even possible? I’m curious to know what a professional thinks about it :)”

“Is such an overlap even possible?” – short answer, yes! Let’s discuss.

Continue reading
Posted in grad school, Research | Tagged , , Simplicity 8579 Women's 18th Century Undergarments Historical Co, | 1 Comment

Featured bug: Jerusalem crickets (AKA Skull Bugs)!

It’s the start of field season, so Joanie, myself, and Nancy all have had a lot to plan for this month.

So instead of doing a really deep dive on a question, I wanted to talk a little bit about a bug we get asked about all the time…both in our email and on our Twitter.

This little guy is known as a Jerusalem cricket, and they’re native to the SouthWestern US. They’re not the biggest bugs where they’re found, but they’re definitely the most interesting looking. Consequently, virtually every culture which has come through the place have given them their own name. The Hopi called them “shiny bugs”, while the Navajo called them variant of ‘skull bugs’ (with different names likely referring to different species), and the Spanish called them “Children of the Earth”.

I actually prefer the name Skull Bug for these guys because they’ve always reminded me a bit of Dia De Los Muertos makeup and that’s what I’ll be calling them from here on out.

Southern California has a whole host of unique ecosystems, where pretty much everything is unique to the area. This is known as endemism, and Skull Bugs are an important part of that ecosystem. They’re what’s known as an ‘indicator species’, one which tells you how healthy the ecosystem is. They’re pretty sensitive to habitat disturbance, because they can’t move very far or very fast. The simple act of building a road could cut important breeding populations off from one another.

Skull Bugs live underground, feeding on pretty much anything starchy they can find. They’re also happy to eat other insects, if the opportunity arises. They can damage potatoes, but they’re not crop pests. Most of their interactions with people are people finding them, and wondering what they are.

These guys are solitary and feircly territorial. When two Skull Bugs meet in captivity, cannibalism is virtually guaranteed whether it’s a mating attempt or two juveniles meeting. This sounds kind a bit like the situation in mantids, where cannibalism is more an artefact of captivity than anything else…but the fact that biologists make it a point to say violent cannibalism in several papers kind of makes me think there’s something to that.

It’s pretty obvious why these guys catch everyone’s eyes. They’re just…cool bugs, and there’s a lot to love about them.

Works Cited

Sánchez-Xolalpa, D. A., Álvarez, H. A., De la Torre-Anzúres, J., & Jiménez-García, D. (2017). Morphometry, Behavior, and Ecology of the Jerusalem Cricket, Stenopelmatus talpa. Southwestern Entomologist, 42(3), 745-752.

Posted in Uncategorized | 2 Comments

Can Gordian worms infect humans? Also, what is ‘pseudoparasitism’?

We get a lot of weird questions in our inbox about parasites. Most of them, we can’t answer because doing so would amount to giving medical advice…but every so often we get a question completely out of left field. Like this one:

Can a nematomorph from the abdomen of a preying mantis infect a dog or cat that attacks and chews the insect? My cat keeps killing mantises on my deck; it’s mortifying because I love them. A lot of them seem to be infected with nematomorphs. Could it get into my cats digestive system and do harm?

When it comes to doctors and invertebrates, I’m notoriously skeptical because there’s a long history of doctors misdiagnosing brown recuse bites. Rick Vetter-one of my personal heroes-made a long career out of simply pointing out that diagnosis of brown recluse bites do not correlate with the known range of the critters…a series of mistakes which likely masked the rise of community acquired antibiotic resistant flesh-eating bacteria.

It’s not often that I hear a new medical claim, so this was absolutely something I wanted to check out.

BalsaCircle 12 pcs 20" Tall Black Glass Eiffel Tower Vases for W
Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

PERSONALIZED LASER ENGRAVED Hammer with Leather Grip. 20 oz. Cus

One of the emails we got this month led to an interesting answer. A nonprofit director asked some questions about an earwig for their kids they teach. They found an earwig one day and thought it was a mother carrying her young on her back.

Continue reading
Posted in Behavior | Tagged , , | Leave a comment