Entries by Kate Redmond

Bug o’the Week – Ninebark – a Bug Magnet

Greetings, BugFans, A few years ago, when the BugLady wrote about the ninebark leaf beetle (Calligrapha spiraea) https://uwm.edu/field-station/rorschach-beetles-family-chrysomelidae/, she made a mental note to pay more attention to ninebark (Physocarpus opulifolius) during its blooming period.  Ninebark?  The way the BugLady heard the story, the shrub’s name comes from the German word “nein” for “no,” a reference to […]

Bug o’the Week – Three More Bluets

Greetings, BugFans, Seasoned BugFans know that the BugLady can’t go too long without writing about Odonates. Quick review: Dragonflies and damselflies are in the order Odonata.  Dragonflies tend to be bigger and bulkier than damselflies, with wrap-around eyes that touch at the top of the head in most families, and with wings that are held out at […]

Bug o’the Week – Xorides stigmapterus Wasp

Greetings, BugFans, This summer, the BugLady got a “what is this?” email from BugFan Debra that contained a picture of this beautiful black wasp with white spats, taken in northern Wisconsin by a friend of hers (thanks, Debra!).  The posture was reminiscent of our local Giant Ichneumon wasps (https://uwm.edu/field-station/giant-ichneumon-wasp/), but there are only four species […]

Bug o’the Week – Whirligig beetle redux

Howdy, BugFans, Here’s an updated BOTW from 10 years ago (more words). Whirligig beetles are referred to in Kaufman and Eaton’s Field Guide to Insects of North America as the “bumper cars of the beetle world.”  Looking like dark watermelon seeds, mobs of whirligig beetles scoot across the still waters of ponds, lakes, and the slower sections […]

Bug o’the Week – Zebra Caddisfly

Greetings, BugFans, Another week, another zebra. The BugLady had fun chasing this dynamite little insect along the banks of the Milwaukee River at Waubedonia Park in mid-summer (it likes to perch on the undersides of leaves).  She had never seen one before, but after a few false starts, she discovered that it’s a Zebra caddisfly […]

Bug o’the Week – Zebra Caterpillar

Howdy, BugFans, There’s a saying among lepidopterists that the more handsome the caterpillar, the drabber the moth.  Without getting all judgy here, today’s bug seems to bear that out https://bugguide.net/node/view/794954. The BugLady photographed these beautiful caterpillars on a cold and blustery day at the start of October, a day when nearby New England asters were topped […]

Bug o’the Week – Raspberry Crown Borer

Howdy, BugFans, Once again, the BugLady fell for an insect’s disguise.  It sure looked like a sluggish yellowjacket sitting on a raspberry leaf, and it wasn’t until she took a picture of it that she noticed all of its hairs/scales.  Not a yellowjacket. Some bugs require a lot of digging to find even the most meager pieces […]

Bug o’the Week – Bugs in the News VII

Greetings, BugFans, There’s a wild and wonderful world of bugs out there – here are some reports from around the globe. Some people hire an exterminator to get rid of bugs, and some purchase them illegally https://www.nationalgeographic.com/animals/2019/09/bug-smuggling-big-business/?cmpid=org=ngp::mc=crm-email::src=ngp::cmp=editorial::add=Animals_20190905::rid=48AE4CBEC4A693AB58F7A257B0A261AD.  If ambush bugs depend on camouflage to help them procure a meal, then this guy is in trouble: https://bugguide.net/node/view/431892/bgpage. Global […]

Bug o’the Week – Ailanthus Webworm Moth

Greetings, BugFans, It’s always a treat to find one of these jewel-like insects nectaring, usually on goldenrod.  They are day-flying moths, though their tendency to sit with wings wrapped around their bodies makes them look like beetles, and their bright colors make them wasp-like in flight. Ailanthus webworm moths (Atteva aurea) (“aurea” means “golden”) are in […]

Bug o’the Week – September Scenes

Howdy, BugFans, The leaves are starting to fall here in God’s Country, the birds are moving, and as of yesterday it’s officially autumn (Yikes!).  But there are still some bugs out there – like wildflowers, some species of insects bloom in the spring, some in the summer, and others in the fall.  The imperative to […]