www.livingworldphotography.net > Other Insect Orders

Achurum carinatum (Longheaded Toothpick Grasshopper)

Achurum carinatum (Longheaded Toothpick Grasshopper)

Can you find this incredibly well camouflaged grasshopper. I certainly would have missed it had I not seen it fly and land here. It blends perfectly with the dead grasses and such around it.


Acrosathe vialis

Acrosathe vialis

This was identified by Stephen Giamari at the PPDC in Sacramento. It's a Stiletto Fly in the family Therevidae


Agapostemon sp (Sweat Bee)

Agapostemon sp (Sweat Bee)

This brightly colored bee are often found around flowers. They're also attracted to sweat, but relatively harmless.

Family Halticidae (Sweat Bees)


Apiomeris californica (Bee Assassin)

Apiomeris californica (Bee Assassin)

This Assassin Bug specializes in catching bees, hence the name. Unfortunately I didn't catch this little insect while it was feeding.

Family Reduviidae


Apiomeris californicus

Apiomeris californicus

My friend said it would be amazing to have a photo of a Bee Assassin feeding on a bee. I like to oblige my friends so after a bit of searching my photos, I finally found this one I took of a feeding Bee Assassin. It's eating a common Honey Bee (Apis mellifera)


Apis mellifera (Honey Bee)

Apis mellifera (Honey Bee)

Anyone who has ever enjoyed honey has to thank this European native bee, they are used all across the US to produce honey for commercial consumption. This individual was feeding on the nectar from a Manzanita tree.

Family Apidae


Arilus cristatus -Wheel Bug

Arilus cristatus -Wheel Bug

This very large and fairly common Assassin Bug derives it's name fore spiked half wheel-shaped pronotum. Despite being common I don't run across them too often.

Family Reduviidae


Banasa sordida

Banasa sordida

This is a rather colorful stinkbug that came to my blacklight.

Family Pentatomidae


Bembix sp (Sand Wasp)

Bembix sp (Sand Wasp)

This was found in Presidio in San Francisco, it resembles a true wasp in pattern but is actually a Digger Wasp in the family Sphecidae.


Bibio sp (March Fly)

Bibio sp (March Fly)

I had a real hard time figuring out what this fly was, or even that it was a fly. It's actually a member of the family Bibionidae, or March Flies.


Bombus impatiens (Bumble Bee)

Bombus impatiens (Bumble Bee)

This was only recently identified to species. Its one variation on the classic bumblebee motif.

Family Apidae (Bees)


Bombus vosnesenskii (Bumblebee)

Bombus vosnesenskii (Bumblebee)

This was identified by the amazing people at Bugguide.net, where I get virtually all of my insect ID's. I usually try to have at least a genus ready to start with. I'm usually on the genus, but beyond that I leave species to the experts... usually


Bombylius major (Greater Bee Fly)

Bombylius major (Greater Bee Fly)

Here's another Bee Fly from the family Bombylidae. The hairy yellow body and distinctive wing pattern is indicative of Bombylius major


Calliphorus sp (Blue Bottle Fly)

Calliphorus sp (Blue Bottle Fly)

This is a member of the ubiquitous Blow Fly family Calliphoridae, and is in fact from the namesake genus Calliphora.


Cephiidae - Stem Sawfly

Cephiidae - Stem Sawfly

No genus for this. It was confirmed by Bugguide as a member of the family Cephidae or Stem Sawflies. As such, they can't actually sting you, which is a trait of all Symphyta.


Chortophaga australior (Southern Green-striped Grasshopper)

Chortophaga australior (Southern Green-striped Grasshopper)

This colorful grasshopper really stands out in a crowd. Don't know anything else about them though.


Coelopa vanduzeei (Kelp Fly)

Coelopa vanduzeei (Kelp Fly)

What you see is what you get with this photo, its as high a resolution as it can be. This is a member of the family Coelopidae, which are found flying around piles of Kelp and other seaweeds on the beach. The extremely hairy legs are a good field mark for separating these from the other flies often found in the same place.


Dance Fly

Dance Fly

This member of the family Empididae was found sitting on the beautiful Fairy's Slipper Orchid.


Dasymutilla aureola (Velvet Ant)

Dasymutilla aureola (Velvet Ant)

These aren't ants at all. In fact these are female wasps in the family Mutillidae, the Velvet Ants. The female are all flightless and fuzzy-looking but the males are winged and look like regular wasps. However, don't let their cuddly appearance fool you - the species Dasymutilla occidentalis is also known by the name Cow Killer, after its extremely nasty sting. Of course, you only have to worry about the female. As with all Hymenoptera, only the females can sting.


Dasymutilla occidentalis - Cow Killer

Dasymutilla occidentalis - Cow Killer

Don't let the fuzziness fool you, not only is this not an ant, its a wasp in the family Mutillidae and has the name Cow Killer for a reason ,and unless your really want to find out why, these are a "Look but don't touch" species


Dichromorpha viridis (Short-winged Green Grasshopper)

Dichromorpha viridis (Short-winged Green Grasshopper)

One of the insect species I photographed over Spring Break in Florida. This is in the family Acrididae.


Dolichovespula arenaria (Sandhill Hornet)

Dolichovespula arenaria (Sandhill Hornet)

This member of the true wasp family was feeding on Coastal Buckwheat on the beach.

Family Vespidae


Epalpus sp (Tachnid Fly)

Epalpus sp (Tachnid Fly)

Not the spiniest Tachnid I've seen, but pretty close. Family Tachinidae


Eristalis sp (Hover Fly)

Eristalis sp (Hover Fly)

Like many hover flies, this is a bee mimic, and a rather convincing one at that.

Family Syrphidae


Eucera sp

Eucera sp

This is another species from the family Apidae. This particular individual is from a Tribe (one down from subfamily) Eucerini. This one is feeding on Manzanita blossoms.


Eulonchus sp - Small-headed Fly

Eulonchus sp - Small-headed Fly

Much better photo of a Small-headed Fly, forgot I even had it.

Family Acroceridae


Exoprosopa fasciata - Bee Fly

Exoprosopa fasciata - Bee Fly

This is a pretty large Bee Fly feeding on Blazing Star


Flesh Fly

Flesh Fly

These flies are often found flying around carrion. One useful marking to look for is a red tip to the abdomen.

Family Sarcophagidae


Forficula auricularia (European Earwig)

Forficula auricularia (European Earwig)

These are seriously ugly looking insects, and this species is a visitor from Europe.

Family Forficulidae


Gryllus sp (Field Cricket)

Gryllus sp (Field Cricket)

About as common as they come, this is a normal field cricket.

Family Gryllidae


Gyponana sp (Leafhopper)

Gyponana sp (Leafhopper)

For a leafhopper, this genus is particularly large, and quite distinctive with the vertical lines on the thorax.

Family Cicadellidae


Hedriodiscus binotatus - Soldier Fly

Hedriodiscus binotatus - Soldier Fly

This pretty green fly is a member of the family Stratiomyidae, the Soldier Flies. They were common on this odd little plant and nowhere else.


Hemipenthes sp. - Bee Fly

Hemipenthes sp. - Bee Fly

Another fuzzy member of Bombyliidae. It's not H. sinuosa, but some other member of the genus.


Leucospis sp

Leucospis sp

This is a member of the family Leucospidae, which is closely related to the family Chalcididae, and they are parasitic


Lopidea sp - Plant Bug

Lopidea sp - Plant Bug

Ubiquitous and hard to identify are the key features of the Miridae family to which this belongs


Lucilla sp (Green Bottle Fly)

Lucilla sp (Green Bottle Fly)

Like the Blue-bottle Fly, this is also a member of the family Calliphoridae


Mediterranean Katydid

Mediterranean Katydid

I thought this was a Scudderia Katydid, but my Entomology TA informed me that it is a species native to the Mediterranean area that he recently described from Southern California.


Megachile sp (Leaf-cutter Bee)

Megachile sp (Leaf-cutter Bee)

This family of bees is best known for collecting pollen under its abdomen as opposed to the sides of its legs, like the bees in the Family Apidae.

Family Megachilidae (Leaf-cutter Bees)


Melanolestes picipes - Black Corsair

Melanolestes picipes - Black Corsair

This is a female of this species, which have wings of varying length, as seen here. They live under rocks and when one bit me, my hand felt like it was on fire, made me drop the damn thing.


Microtes occidentalis

Microtes occidentalis

This is one of four species in the genus Microtes, all are coastal, and all are in California


Microtomus purcis

Microtomus purcis

It's been a while since I added anything to this album. However, this Assassin bug in Reduviidae was too cool to pass up. They're quite large and I'm sure they would give quite a painful bite if I tried to grab one. They're a very distinctive species, which is always nice when dealing with insects.


Neorhynchocephalus volaticus

Neorhynchocephalus volaticus

These are a member of the family Nemestrinidae, which doesnt appear to be too common.


Oligotoma nigra (Black Webspinner)

Oligotoma nigra (Black Webspinner)

These are fascinating insects that, like spiders, make web cocoons, and can roll their wings forward in order to aid in moving in and out of their cocoons. This is apparently a non-native, and that there are really only a few species that are native.

Family Ogilotomidae


Oncopeltus fasciatus - Large Milkweed Bug

Oncopeltus fasciatus - Large Milkweed Bug

These are extremely common on virtually any milkweed species. I don't happen to know what species of milkweed this is, it might be Whorled Milkweed, but without the flower I don't know.


Orchelimum sp - Katydid

Orchelimum sp - Katydid

Yet another unidentifiable Orchelimum

Family Tettigoniidae


Orchelimum superbum

Orchelimum superbum

This is Orchelimum superbum. Jeffrey Cole and I wrote a paper about this specimen: it represented the discovery of the species's primary range in the Great Plains.


Panorpa sp - Scorpion Fly

Panorpa sp - Scorpion Fly

These aren't flies, they're actually in an order called Mecoptera (a new one for me). They get their name from the fact that the males ovipositor resembles the stinger on a Scorpion. This is a female if I'm not mistaken.


Phymata sp (Jagged Ambush Bug)

Phymata sp (Jagged Ambush Bug)

When I first saw this bug, I thought I was looking at a Mantis. In fact, these are closely related to Assassin Bugs, some consider it to be in the same family as them, rather than the separate family Phymatidae.


Poecilanthrax sp (Bee Fly)

Poecilanthrax sp (Bee Fly)

Haven't seen too many Bee Flies, this one was at the top of a ridge at Muir Woods.

Family Bombyllidae


Psinidia fenestralis

Psinidia fenestralis

I can only assume this was a freshly molted individual, because though the pattern is the same as the pattern for a Marbled Grasshopper, the colors are much more vibrant. This is also in the family Acrididae.

Turns out this wasn't a Marbled Grasshopper after all


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