Insects III - Doodlebugs, lacewings, cicadas and others

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1 It doesn't take much to entertain Kenny and me! :) We enjoyed looking for <strong>Antlion larvae</strong>, a.k.a "Doodlebugs", (<em>Myrmeleon</em> spp.) in these pits beneath the cliffs at Piney Falls. The larvae live in the base or the sides of the pi...

It doesn't take much to entertain Kenny and me! :) We enjoyed looking for Antlion larvae, a.k.a "Doodlebugs", (Myrmeleon spp.) in these pits beneath the cliffs at Piney Falls. The larvae live in the base or the sides of the pi...

It doesn't take much to entertain Kenny and me! :) We enjoyed looking for Antlion larvae, a.k.a "Doodlebugs", (Myrmeleon spp.) in these pits beneath the cliffs at Piney Falls. The larvae live in the base or the sides of the pits that they dig in loose, dry soil. When an ant falls into the pit, it is unable to walk up the loose grains of soil. Suddenly, the antlion grabs the ant with its' huge mandibles and pulls it beneath the soil at the base of the pit. Soon the ant is a dry shell, having had its liquids drained. Antlions are in the order Neuroptera, meaning "nerve-winged". 1731
2 This <strong>"doodlebug"</strong> looks like a creature from a science fiction horror movie, but it is actually the larval stage of the Antlion. It digs a pit into loose soil, buries itself at the bottom and patiently waits for an ant to tumble in. My ...

This "doodlebug" looks like a creature from a science fiction horror movie, but it is actually the larval stage of the Antlion. It digs a pit into loose soil, buries itself at the bottom and patiently waits for an ant to tumble in. My ...

This "doodlebug" looks like a creature from a science fiction horror movie, but it is actually the larval stage of the Antlion. It digs a pit into loose soil, buries itself at the bottom and patiently waits for an ant to tumble in. My husband held this one in his hand so I could photograph it, fortunately it didn't bite him!(see next photo) A note of interest: doodlebugs can only move backwards! 2100
3 An Antlion larva on the ground

An Antlion larva on the ground

An Antlion larva on the ground 1295
4 This unlucky Ant is trapped in an antlion pit. A few seconds later it was suddenly pulled below the fine grains of soil and devoured!

This unlucky Ant is trapped in an antlion pit. A few seconds later it was suddenly pulled below the fine grains of soil and devoured!

This unlucky Ant is trapped in an antlion pit. A few seconds later it was suddenly pulled below the fine grains of soil and devoured! 1199
5 <strong>Antlion</strong> - adult
<em>Myrmeleon</em> spp. 
Oak Ridge, TN
August 9, 2008

This Antlion flew into the house as we were unpacking from our Bugguide Gathering trip. Great timing! :) I didn't want to scare it, so I photographed it on the...

Antlion - adult Myrmeleon spp. Oak Ridge, TN August 9, 2008 This Antlion flew into the house as we were unpacking from our Bugguide Gathering trip. Great timing! :) I didn't want to scare it, so I photographed it on the...

Antlion - adult Myrmeleon spp. Oak Ridge, TN August 9, 2008 This Antlion flew into the house as we were unpacking from our Bugguide Gathering trip. Great timing! :) I didn't want to scare it, so I photographed it on the floor. It is hard to believe that this used to be a gruesome "doodlebug" just a few weeks earlier! The adults are pretty, not as intimidating as their larval versions! It would be easy to mistake this for a damselfly at a quick glance because of its delicate wings and thin abdomen, however the eyes, mouth and curved antennae are good clues to its identity. 1204
6 <strong>Antlion</strong> (no common name)
<em>Glenurus gratus</em>
Oak Ridge, TN
7-1-10

Unfortunately, this spectacular insect does not have a common name. The wing span on this gorgeous creature is 5 inches.

Antlion (no common name) Glenurus gratus Oak Ridge, TN 7-1-10 Unfortunately, this spectacular insect does not have a common name. The wing span on this gorgeous creature is 5 inches.

Antlion (no common name) Glenurus gratus Oak Ridge, TN 7-1-10 Unfortunately, this spectacular insect does not have a common name. The wing span on this gorgeous creature is 5 inches. 757
7 Antlion 
Glenurus gratus

This insect came to my black light and sheet on my carport. What a gorgeous creature!

Antlion Glenurus gratus This insect came to my black light and sheet on my carport. What a gorgeous creature!

Antlion Glenurus gratus This insect came to my black light and sheet on my carport. What a gorgeous creature! 692
8 <strong>Green Lacewing</strong> 
<em>Chrysoperla</em> spp. / Neuroptera
This adult Lacewing was photographed on a sheet that we attached on the wall of the cabin at science camp. We had turned on a black light overnight to attract insects. Lacewings ...

Green Lacewing Chrysoperla spp. / Neuroptera This adult Lacewing was photographed on a sheet that we attached on the wall of the cabin at science camp. We had turned on a black light overnight to attract insects. Lacewings ...

Green Lacewing Chrysoperla spp. / Neuroptera This adult Lacewing was photographed on a sheet that we attached on the wall of the cabin at science camp. We had turned on a black light overnight to attract insects. Lacewings lay their eggs on tree bark. Since the larvae are canabilistic, the eggs are located at the end of thin stalks. The larvae cover themselves with tiny pieces of tree bark and lichen as a form of camouflage. The larvae attack and eat tiny insects. (See photo #7) 1198
9 Lacewing eyes make a cool pattern when taken with a flash!

Lacewing eyes make a cool pattern when taken with a flash!

Lacewing eyes make a cool pattern when taken with a flash! 298
10 It took several tries and a 6+ diopter lens, but I finally got this photograph of a Lacewing egg! Note the thin white stalk that the egg is hanging from.

It took several tries and a 6+ diopter lens, but I finally got this photograph of a Lacewing egg! Note the thin white stalk that the egg is hanging from.

It took several tries and a 6+ diopter lens, but I finally got this photograph of a Lacewing egg! Note the thin white stalk that the egg is hanging from. 975
11 This <strong>Brown Lacewing Larva</strong> was chowing down on the Oleander aphids that were chowing down on my milkweed plants. The larva is about 1/2" long, so I had to use a 6+ diopter adapter on my lens and then really crop this shot a lot! Some br...

This Brown Lacewing Larva was chowing down on the Oleander aphids that were chowing down on my milkweed plants. The larva is about 1/2" long, so I had to use a 6+ diopter adapter on my lens and then really crop this shot a lot! Some br...

This Brown Lacewing Larva was chowing down on the Oleander aphids that were chowing down on my milkweed plants. The larva is about 1/2" long, so I had to use a 6+ diopter adapter on my lens and then really crop this shot a lot! Some brown lacewing larvae stick small pieces of bark, lichen, or even the dried remains of their prey on their backs as a form of camouflage, they are called "trashbugs"! 1224
12 One of the ladies at Tremont found this fuzzy white <strong>Lacewing larva</strong> (a.k.a. "trashbug") during a nature awareness class. These larvae camouflage themselves by attaching bits of lichen or even the skins of their prey on their backs. This...

One of the ladies at Tremont found this fuzzy white Lacewing larva (a.k.a. "trashbug") during a nature awareness class. These larvae camouflage themselves by attaching bits of lichen or even the skins of their prey on their backs. This...

One of the ladies at Tremont found this fuzzy white Lacewing larva (a.k.a. "trashbug") during a nature awareness class. These larvae camouflage themselves by attaching bits of lichen or even the skins of their prey on their backs. This one may have dead Hemlock Wooly Adelgids attached to it. I've seen these insects crawling about among other white aphids, well camouflaged (with the skins of dead aphids) and able to eat their fill. Talk about a "wolf in sheep's clothing!" 1399
13 Unfortunately, I had to break the Milkweed leaf to get to the underside in order to take this photo of a Lacewing larva eating an aphid (thus the drip of white sap). I had watched the larva stalk the aphid before it finally caught it. Note the fuzzy wh...

Unfortunately, I had to break the Milkweed leaf to get to the underside in order to take this photo of a Lacewing larva eating an aphid (thus the drip of white sap). I had watched the larva stalk the aphid before it finally caught it. Note the fuzzy wh...

Unfortunately, I had to break the Milkweed leaf to get to the underside in order to take this photo of a Lacewing larva eating an aphid (thus the drip of white sap). I had watched the larva stalk the aphid before it finally caught it. Note the fuzzy white debris it has put on its back as camouflage, it is probably the shed exoskeletons of the aphids. Talk about a "wolf in sheep's clothing"! 792
14 <strong>Oleander Aphids</strong> <em>Aphis nerii</em>
July 3, 2007  

I found this brown Syrphid (fly) larva munching on these aphids on my milkweed leaves. These aphids are European transplants. The predator doesn't seem to be deterred by the bad-t...

Oleander Aphids Aphis nerii July 3, 2007 I found this brown Syrphid (fly) larva munching on these aphids on my milkweed leaves. These aphids are European transplants. The predator doesn't seem to be deterred by the bad-t...

Oleander Aphids Aphis nerii July 3, 2007 I found this brown Syrphid (fly) larva munching on these aphids on my milkweed leaves. These aphids are European transplants. The predator doesn't seem to be deterred by the bad-tasting toxin taken up by the aphids as they eat the sap of the milkweed. They use the bright orange coloration to deter predators. 1312
15 While I was photographing this Syrphid fly larva eating an aphid, an ant suddenly ran over and tried to bite the larva! Ants obtain honeydew (a sweet liquid waste secretion) from the aphids, so they try to protect them from predators. She was not succe...

While I was photographing this Syrphid fly larva eating an aphid, an ant suddenly ran over and tried to bite the larva! Ants obtain honeydew (a sweet liquid waste secretion) from the aphids, so they try to protect them from predators. She was not succe...

While I was photographing this Syrphid fly larva eating an aphid, an ant suddenly ran over and tried to bite the larva! Ants obtain honeydew (a sweet liquid waste secretion) from the aphids, so they try to protect them from predators. She was not successful, but she sure tried! I wish the ant had not come out blurry, but the event happened so quickly I didn't have time to focus! 1002
16 <strong>Aphid defense</strong>

When this hungry lacewing larva chomped down on the green aphid, it released the drops of defensive fluid from its 2 cornicles. Obviously, the larva was undeterred!

Aphid defense When this hungry lacewing larva chomped down on the green aphid, it released the drops of defensive fluid from its 2 cornicles. Obviously, the larva was undeterred!

Aphid defense When this hungry lacewing larva chomped down on the green aphid, it released the drops of defensive fluid from its 2 cornicles. Obviously, the larva was undeterred! 780
17 <strong>Aphids, "Mummies" and an Ant</strong>

There are many different sizes of aphids in this photo. By going through asexual reproduction (called "parthenogenesis") an adult aphid can produce up to 80 nymphs in a week! Ants often "milk" aphids by ...

Aphids, "Mummies" and an Ant There are many different sizes of aphids in this photo. By going through asexual reproduction (called "parthenogenesis") an adult aphid can produce up to 80 nymphs in a week! Ants often "milk" aphids by ...

Aphids, "Mummies" and an Ant There are many different sizes of aphids in this photo. By going through asexual reproduction (called "parthenogenesis") an adult aphid can produce up to 80 nymphs in a week! Ants often "milk" aphids by stroking them with their antennae. The aphids give off honeydew, a sweet liquid obtained from the plant juices, which the ants like to eat. I had seen several of these strange-looking, brown aphids on my milkweed leaves. While researching about a parasitic wasp, I came across a photo like this, I was amazed to learn that it is an "Aphid Mummy", an aphid that had been parasitized by a tiny Brachonid wasp. If the exoskeleton of the aphid was opened, a small wasp larva would be revealed. Sometimes truth is stranger than fiction! The little black "tubes" protruding from the back end of the aphids are called cornicles, which are used for releasing a fluid used in defense (see previous photo). 1205
18 This Parasitic wasp is laying her egg in an aphid! (Note the following photos of the aphid mummies) The wasp is doing my tomato plants a big favor by killing the aphids. However, at the rate the aphids reproduce, I think they are going to win that cont...

This Parasitic wasp is laying her egg in an aphid! (Note the following photos of the aphid mummies) The wasp is doing my tomato plants a big favor by killing the aphids. However, at the rate the aphids reproduce, I think they are going to win that cont...

This Parasitic wasp is laying her egg in an aphid! (Note the following photos of the aphid mummies) The wasp is doing my tomato plants a big favor by killing the aphids. However, at the rate the aphids reproduce, I think they are going to win that contest! Unfortunately, this photo is not as sharp as I would like, I took this macro image hand-held at 8:30 p.m. and there was a slight breeze, so all the elements were working against me! 1044
19 The developing larva of the parasitic wasp can be seen inside this Aphid mummy.

The developing larva of the parasitic wasp can be seen inside this Aphid mummy.

The developing larva of the parasitic wasp can be seen inside this Aphid mummy. 746
20 If you are very observant, tomato plants can be very fascinating! While checking the progress of the developing tomatoes on my patio, I noticed the shell of an aphid that had been eaten by a parasitic wasp larva. Notice the hole in the aphid's exoskele...

If you are very observant, tomato plants can be very fascinating! While checking the progress of the developing tomatoes on my patio, I noticed the shell of an aphid that had been eaten by a parasitic wasp larva. Notice the hole in the aphid's exoskele...

If you are very observant, tomato plants can be very fascinating! While checking the progress of the developing tomatoes on my patio, I noticed the shell of an aphid that had been eaten by a parasitic wasp larva. Notice the hole in the aphid's exoskeleton where the larva exited the body. The white object below the aphid shell is the cocoon of the wasp pupa. 808
21 These Aphids were lined up on both sides of this leaf vein like a bunch of "good old boys" (actually "gals") at a bar! They were drinking sap from the leaf. Aphids can carry bacteria and viruses causing disease in some plants.

These Aphids were lined up on both sides of this leaf vein like a bunch of "good old boys" (actually "gals") at a bar! They were drinking sap from the leaf. Aphids can carry bacteria and viruses causing disease in some plants.

These Aphids were lined up on both sides of this leaf vein like a bunch of "good old boys" (actually "gals") at a bar! They were drinking sap from the leaf. Aphids can carry bacteria and viruses causing disease in some plants. 699
22 <em>Macrosiphum euphorbiae</em>
May 2008

An Aphid giving birth is not something you see every day! Aphids reproduce by <u>parthenogenesis</u>, in other words, they clone themselves. I photographed this one on one of my tomato plants. The baby aphid...

Macrosiphum euphorbiae May 2008 An Aphid giving birth is not something you see every day! Aphids reproduce by parthenogenesis, in other words, they clone themselves. I photographed this one on one of my tomato plants. The baby aphid...

Macrosiphum euphorbiae May 2008 An Aphid giving birth is not something you see every day! Aphids reproduce by parthenogenesis, in other words, they clone themselves. I photographed this one on one of my tomato plants. The baby aphid struggled to get free of its mother. This photo was taken with a 105 mm macro lens. 848
23 April 18, 2009
I saw this winged adult Aphid just after it emerged from nymph skin on the stem of a columbine flower in my garden. The wings are still damp.

April 18, 2009 I saw this winged adult Aphid just after it emerged from nymph skin on the stem of a columbine flower in my garden. The wings are still damp.

April 18, 2009 I saw this winged adult Aphid just after it emerged from nymph skin on the stem of a columbine flower in my garden. The wings are still damp. 524
24 <strong>Giant Bark aphids</strong>
<em>Longistigma caryae</em>
Oak Ridge, TN
June 12, 2009

I noticed these large aphids and even larger ants on a tree at the University of Tennessee Arboretum. The large black ants would stroke the aphids to encou...

Giant Bark aphids Longistigma caryae Oak Ridge, TN June 12, 2009 I noticed these large aphids and even larger ants on a tree at the University of Tennessee Arboretum. The large black ants would stroke the aphids to encou...

Giant Bark aphids Longistigma caryae Oak Ridge, TN June 12, 2009 I noticed these large aphids and even larger ants on a tree at the University of Tennessee Arboretum. The large black ants would stroke the aphids to encourage them to produce honeydew. 606
25 <strong>Woolly Apple Aphids</strong>
<em>Eriosoma Lanigerum </em>
June 2007
Kingsport, TN
I found this large mass of Wooly Apple Aphids on a branch at Warriors Path State Park. Ants would stroke them with their antennae to encourage the ants to pro...

Woolly Apple Aphids Eriosoma Lanigerum June 2007 Kingsport, TN I found this large mass of Wooly Apple Aphids on a branch at Warriors Path State Park. Ants would stroke them with their antennae to encourage the ants to pro...

Woolly Apple Aphids Eriosoma Lanigerum June 2007 Kingsport, TN I found this large mass of Wooly Apple Aphids on a branch at Warriors Path State Park. Ants would stroke them with their antennae to encourage the ants to produce honeydew. These aphids produce a white, waxy substance to protect themselves from predators. Often aphids that congregate in masses, such as these, will move in unison. 1260
26 These Wooly Apple Aphids were covering a black berry leaf at Haw Ridge. Notice the long white, waxy threads.

These Wooly Apple Aphids were covering a black berry leaf at Haw Ridge. Notice the long white, waxy threads.

These Wooly Apple Aphids were covering a black berry leaf at Haw Ridge. Notice the long white, waxy threads. 1143
27 Wooly Apple Aphid nymphs

Wooly Apple Aphid nymphs

Wooly Apple Aphid nymphs 538
28 This larva was eating Wooly Apple Aphids on a blackberry leaf at the University of Tennessee Arboretum in Oak Ridge. So, in this case the long, waxy threads the nymphs produce didn't help them!

This larva was eating Wooly Apple Aphids on a blackberry leaf at the University of Tennessee Arboretum in Oak Ridge. So, in this case the long, waxy threads the nymphs produce didn't help them!

This larva was eating Wooly Apple Aphids on a blackberry leaf at the University of Tennessee Arboretum in Oak Ridge. So, in this case the long, waxy threads the nymphs produce didn't help them! 705
29 Wooly Aphid

Wooly Aphid

Wooly Aphid 1244
30 <strong>Hemlock Wooly Adelgids</strong>
<em>Adelges tsugae</em>
Great Smoky Mountains NP
May 10, 2008

I found this heavily infested tree while hiking in the Smokies. Unfortunately, these tiny, fuzzy, white insects can kill a hemlock tree quite qu...

Hemlock Wooly Adelgids Adelges tsugae Great Smoky Mountains NP May 10, 2008 I found this heavily infested tree while hiking in the Smokies. Unfortunately, these tiny, fuzzy, white insects can kill a hemlock tree quite qu...

Hemlock Wooly Adelgids Adelges tsugae Great Smoky Mountains NP May 10, 2008 I found this heavily infested tree while hiking in the Smokies. Unfortunately, these tiny, fuzzy, white insects can kill a hemlock tree quite quickly by sucking the sap from the needles and twigs. Many areas of the park have been devastated by these non-native insects. The park staff is fighting them by releasing small predatory beetles, spraying roadside trees with a soap solution and injecting large, off-road trees with an insecticide. Unfortunately, it is too late for many of the ancient hemlocks in the higher elevations of the park. 982
31 This tiny <strong>Praying Mantis Nymph</strong> was about 1/2" tall. I took this photo on Memorial Day 2007 during a picnic.

This tiny Praying Mantis Nymph was about 1/2" tall. I took this photo on Memorial Day 2007 during a picnic.

This tiny Praying Mantis Nymph was about 1/2" tall. I took this photo on Memorial Day 2007 during a picnic. 1052
32 <strong>Chinese Mantid</strong>
<em>Tenodera aridifolia</em> / Dictyoptera (Mantodea)
This green male Chinese Mantid (Praying Mantises are all brown) was resting on a wooden bridge at Big Ridge State Park. He has a much thinner abdomen than the egg-l...

Chinese Mantid Tenodera aridifolia / Dictyoptera (Mantodea) This green male Chinese Mantid (Praying Mantises are all brown) was resting on a wooden bridge at Big Ridge State Park. He has a much thinner abdomen than the egg-l...

Chinese Mantid Tenodera aridifolia / Dictyoptera (Mantodea) This green male Chinese Mantid (Praying Mantises are all brown) was resting on a wooden bridge at Big Ridge State Park. He has a much thinner abdomen than the egg-laying females. The female often eats her mate while they are mating! As gruesome as this sounds, the protein she consumes from his body insures a healthy next generation of praying mantises! If it is any consolation, most insects die after mating and egg laying anyway! 1585
33 Mantids are one of the few insects that can move their head. They have huge compound eyes. The legs have large spikes that they use to hold their prey.

Mantids are one of the few insects that can move their head. They have huge compound eyes. The legs have large spikes that they use to hold their prey.

Mantids are one of the few insects that can move their head. They have huge compound eyes. The legs have large spikes that they use to hold their prey. 994
34 I saw this Praying Mantis pair mating when we were in Kingsport. Notice how much larger the female's abdomen is. She got distracted when I came over with the camera, so the male took advantage of the break, jumped and took off. He was one of the lucky ...

I saw this Praying Mantis pair mating when we were in Kingsport. Notice how much larger the female's abdomen is. She got distracted when I came over with the camera, so the male took advantage of the break, jumped and took off. He was one of the lucky ...

I saw this Praying Mantis pair mating when we were in Kingsport. Notice how much larger the female's abdomen is. She got distracted when I came over with the camera, so the male took advantage of the break, jumped and took off. He was one of the lucky males who mated and lived to tell about it! ;) 748
35 This close-up of a Praying Mantis' leg shows why they are such lethal hunters. It would be difficult for many insects to escape those hooks and spines!

This close-up of a Praying Mantis' leg shows why they are such lethal hunters. It would be difficult for many insects to escape those hooks and spines!

This close-up of a Praying Mantis' leg shows why they are such lethal hunters. It would be difficult for many insects to escape those hooks and spines! 876
36 Praying Mantis nymphs overwinter in the egg case. When the temperatures warm up in the spring the nymphs will emarge from the case. They must spread out quickly though, they will eat each other! Years ago I unknowingly had one of these on my Christmas ...

Praying Mantis nymphs overwinter in the egg case. When the temperatures warm up in the spring the nymphs will emarge from the case. They must spread out quickly though, they will eat each other! Years ago I unknowingly had one of these on my Christmas ...

Praying Mantis nymphs overwinter in the egg case. When the temperatures warm up in the spring the nymphs will emarge from the case. They must spread out quickly though, they will eat each other! Years ago I unknowingly had one of these on my Christmas tree, a couple of days later there were nearly 100 tiny nymphs all over my apartment! 1287
37 This wild-looking, red-eyed <strong>Periodical Cicada</strong> (<em>Magicicada septendecim</em> ) is just one of <u>trillions</u> in the eastern United States that emerged from the ground in May 2004. It is a Brood X (as in "10" in Roman Numerals) Peri...

This wild-looking, red-eyed Periodical Cicada (Magicicada septendecim ) is just one of trillions in the eastern United States that emerged from the ground in May 2004. It is a Brood X (as in "10" in Roman Numerals) Peri...

This wild-looking, red-eyed Periodical Cicada (Magicicada septendecim ) is just one of trillions in the eastern United States that emerged from the ground in May 2004. It is a Brood X (as in "10" in Roman Numerals) Periodical Cicada, a.k.a. "17-Year Locust." They are un-nerving to "insectophobes," but these insects are harmless, they don't bite or sting. The males "sing" (a sound that has been likened to the whirring sound of a UFO landing in a Sci-Fi movie) to attract their prospective mate by vibrating two membranes on the thorax just below the first pair of legs. After mating, the female lays her eggs in slits in the bark at the ends of tree twigs. Sometimes the leaves on those twigs will wilt and die. Other than that, the insects don't harm the tree. When the nymphs hatch from the eggs, they fall to the ground below the tree and dig in the soil until they find a tree root to drink sap from. (to be continued on the next picture) 1276
38 <strong>Periodical Cicada</strong>
<em>Magicicada septendecim</em>
Great Smoky Mountains NP
May 10, 2008

These cicadas were everywhere in Cades Cove the day we hiked there. The ground had thousands of holes where they had emerged; the grass, tree...

Periodical Cicada Magicicada septendecim Great Smoky Mountains NP May 10, 2008 These cicadas were everywhere in Cades Cove the day we hiked there. The ground had thousands of holes where they had emerged; the grass, tree...

Periodical Cicada Magicicada septendecim Great Smoky Mountains NP May 10, 2008 These cicadas were everywhere in Cades Cove the day we hiked there. The ground had thousands of holes where they had emerged; the grass, trees, and even fence posts had discarded nymph skins, and the newly emerged adults were drying their wings wherever they could. We could hear the males in the forest making their high-pitched mating calls. 915
39 Cicada Nymph skin<br>
The discarded nymph skins (exoskeletons) are often found on trees, grass blades, or sides of buildings. The nymphs live underground anywhere from 7, 13, or 17 years, depending on the species. On some unknown cue, the nymphs begin...

Cicada Nymph skin
The discarded nymph skins (exoskeletons) are often found on trees, grass blades, or sides of buildings. The nymphs live underground anywhere from 7, 13, or 17 years, depending on the species. On some unknown cue, the nymphs begin...

Cicada Nymph skin
The discarded nymph skins (exoskeletons) are often found on trees, grass blades, or sides of buildings. The nymphs live underground anywhere from 7, 13, or 17 years, depending on the species. On some unknown cue, the nymphs begin to dig toward the surface and climb up a vertical surface. The nymph's skin splits on the thorax, just behind the head, then the adult insect slowly emerges from the skin. The process takes about 45 minutes (I watched one of the Dogday cicadas emerge from its skin once, it was fascinating!). After emerging from the soil-encrusted exoskeleton, the cicada rests and allows its wings to dry. The adult insects do not live long after mating. Reproduction is the "kiss of death" for these insects! They don't eat in this phase of their life, in fact, they don't even have a mouth!
1171
40 Cicadas live the nymph phase of their lives underground. The hole is where a cicada has exited the ground after living 17 years. I staged the shell coming out of the hole (the adult has already exited).

Cicadas live the nymph phase of their lives underground. The hole is where a cicada has exited the ground after living 17 years. I staged the shell coming out of the hole (the adult has already exited).

Cicadas live the nymph phase of their lives underground. The hole is where a cicada has exited the ground after living 17 years. I staged the shell coming out of the hole (the adult has already exited). 1622
41 <strong>Dog-day Cicada</strong>
<em>Tibicen</em> spp.

I was excited to see this Dogday Cicada emerge from its' shell. It had crawled from the ground an hour earlier. One of my students found it at the Lavender Festival in Oak Ridge. When she showed...

Dog-day Cicada Tibicen spp. I was excited to see this Dogday Cicada emerge from its' shell. It had crawled from the ground an hour earlier. One of my students found it at the Lavender Festival in Oak Ridge. When she showed...

Dog-day Cicada Tibicen spp. I was excited to see this Dogday Cicada emerge from its' shell. It had crawled from the ground an hour earlier. One of my students found it at the Lavender Festival in Oak Ridge. When she showed me the nymph in her hand I told her to go put it on a tree and watch it. About an hour later I heard her yell, "Mrs. Light, come here, it's coming out!" This was only the second time I had had the fortunate opportunity to witness this miracle of nature! I was surprised to see the tiny grasshopper nymph sitting on the brown shell when I enlarged the photo. 1243
42 It took about an hour for the Cicada to emerge to this stage.

It took about an hour for the Cicada to emerge to this stage.

It took about an hour for the Cicada to emerge to this stage. 903
43 These female Periodical Cicadas have mated and are ready to lay their eggs on the tree branch.

These female Periodical Cicadas have mated and are ready to lay their eggs on the tree branch.

These female Periodical Cicadas have mated and are ready to lay their eggs on the tree branch. 940
44 <strong>Cicada damaged tree</strong><br>
The female cicadas damage the ends of the twigs of trees when they lay their eggs in the bark.

Cicada damaged tree
The female cicadas damage the ends of the twigs of trees when they lay their eggs in the bark.

Cicada damaged tree
The female cicadas damage the ends of the twigs of trees when they lay their eggs in the bark.
1248
45 While hiking to Baskin Falls in the Smokies in early May I heard something rustling the dry leaves. I noticed hundreds of small Grasshopper Nymphs hopping on the ground. Grasshoppers go through incomplete metamorphosis. In this type of life cycle, a ny...

While hiking to Baskin Falls in the Smokies in early May I heard something rustling the dry leaves. I noticed hundreds of small Grasshopper Nymphs hopping on the ground. Grasshoppers go through incomplete metamorphosis. In this type of life cycle, a ny...

While hiking to Baskin Falls in the Smokies in early May I heard something rustling the dry leaves. I noticed hundreds of small Grasshopper Nymphs hopping on the ground. Grasshoppers go through incomplete metamorphosis. In this type of life cycle, a nymph which is a small, wingless version of an adult, emerges from the soil. The mother grasshopper had deposited her eggs in the soil the previous fall and they overwintered in that stage. When the temperatures warmed up in the spring, the tiny nymphs emerged. Since insects have a hard exoskeleton, they have to molt their skin to be able to grow. Nymphs molt 5 times (each stage is called an "instar") before becoming an adult. The adult insect has wings and is able to reproduce. 817
46 Grasshoppers can spit a foul-tasting "tobacco juice" as a defense mechanism. When one of the boys at science camp caught this one in his net, the insect gave off a mouthfull of this black liquid.

Grasshoppers can spit a foul-tasting "tobacco juice" as a defense mechanism. When one of the boys at science camp caught this one in his net, the insect gave off a mouthfull of this black liquid.

Grasshoppers can spit a foul-tasting "tobacco juice" as a defense mechanism. When one of the boys at science camp caught this one in his net, the insect gave off a mouthfull of this black liquid. 1331
47 These <strong>Eastern Lubber Grasshoppers</strong> (<em>Romalea microptera </em>) were photographed in Florida. The female is the larger of this pair; with grasshoppers, girls rule! I remember being fascinated by these huge, brightly colored grasshoppe...

These Eastern Lubber Grasshoppers (Romalea microptera ) were photographed in Florida. The female is the larger of this pair; with grasshoppers, girls rule! I remember being fascinated by these huge, brightly colored grasshoppe...

These Eastern Lubber Grasshoppers (Romalea microptera ) were photographed in Florida. The female is the larger of this pair; with grasshoppers, girls rule! I remember being fascinated by these huge, brightly colored grasshoppers when I visited Florida as a child. 1187
48 <strong>Field Cricket</strong> - Male
<em>Gryllus assimilis</em>
Even though this is called a "Field" Cricket,I photographed this guy in on the floor in the bathroom at my school, it helps to have a small camera handy at all times! :) The males of th...

Field Cricket - Male Gryllus assimilis Even though this is called a "Field" Cricket,I photographed this guy in on the floor in the bathroom at my school, it helps to have a small camera handy at all times! :) The males of th...

Field Cricket - Male Gryllus assimilis Even though this is called a "Field" Cricket,I photographed this guy in on the floor in the bathroom at my school, it helps to have a small camera handy at all times! :) The males of these crickets chirp loudly and can become extremely annoying if they get into a building! It is easy to identify the males and females of these insects, the female has 3 "prongs", called cerci, on the end of her abdomen. Females have an ovipositor for laying eggs in the soil. Crickets go through incomplete metamorphosis, the nymphs look like smaller copies of the adults. Many people get crickets and grasshoppers confused. Crickets are usually flatter and the males "sing". 1582
49 Field Cricket - female

Note the long, hollow ovipositor (in the center) on the end of this cricket's abdomen. Crickets lay their eggs in soil with the ovipositor. I found her injured on my carport.

Field Cricket - female Note the long, hollow ovipositor (in the center) on the end of this cricket's abdomen. Crickets lay their eggs in soil with the ovipositor. I found her injured on my carport.

Field Cricket - female Note the long, hollow ovipositor (in the center) on the end of this cricket's abdomen. Crickets lay their eggs in soil with the ovipositor. I found her injured on my carport. 970
50 <strong>Camel Cricket</strong> - male
<em>Ceuthophilus</em> sp.
These crickets are often found in damp basements and caves. The adults do not have wings and they don't chirp. They can jump long distances and are quite active. Check out those cool bac...

Camel Cricket - male Ceuthophilus sp. These crickets are often found in damp basements and caves. The adults do not have wings and they don't chirp. They can jump long distances and are quite active. Check out those cool bac...

Camel Cricket - male Ceuthophilus sp. These crickets are often found in damp basements and caves. The adults do not have wings and they don't chirp. They can jump long distances and are quite active. Check out those cool back feet! 1159
51 <strong>Red-headed Bush Cricket</strong>
<em>Phyllopalpus pulchellus</em>
Cove Lake State Park

Red-headed Bush Cricket Phyllopalpus pulchellus Cove Lake State Park

Red-headed Bush Cricket Phyllopalpus pulchellus Cove Lake State Park 1071
52 <strong>Tree cricket</strong> - female
<em>Oecanthus</em> sp.
There is a mathematical formula for telling the temperature by counting the chirps per minute of the male of this cricket. Here is a nice website to hear cricket chirps: <a href="http://na...

Tree cricket - female Oecanthus sp. There is a mathematical formula for telling the temperature by counting the chirps per minute of the male of this cricket. Here is a nice website to hear cricket chirps:

Tree cricket - female Oecanthus sp. There is a mathematical formula for telling the temperature by counting the chirps per minute of the male of this cricket. Here is a nice website to hear cricket chirps: sounds of cricket chirps 1057
53 <strong>Two-spotted Tree Cricket</strong> - male
<em>Oecanthus</em> spp.
<strong>A musical Tree Cricket!</strong>

Nancy, one of the participants at the 2008 Bugguide Gathering, studies Tree Crickets. Everyone was surprised when she came out of the...

Two-spotted Tree Cricket - male Oecanthus spp. A musical Tree Cricket! Nancy, one of the participants at the 2008 Bugguide Gathering, studies Tree Crickets. Everyone was surprised when she came out of the...

Two-spotted Tree Cricket - male Oecanthus spp. A musical Tree Cricket! Nancy, one of the participants at the 2008 Bugguide Gathering, studies Tree Crickets. Everyone was surprised when she came out of the woods with her flashlight and told us she had something she wanted to show us. This photo shows how the male tree cricket modifies a leaf to amplify his chirping sound. He chews a hole in the leaf, sticks his head through the hole, and then uses the hole to amplify the sound of the chirps to attract a female! How cool is that!? As later written by Nancy, "This photo also shows the (brown) metanotal gland area (like a tree cricket honey pot) -- where the female will feed while he slips the spermatophore where it needs to be." She is the expert and can say it a lot better than I can! 784
54 <strong>Earwigs</strong>
<em>Forficula auricularia</em> / Dermaptera (skin-winged)
These strange-looking insects appear dangerous because of their weird "forceps" on the end of their abdomen (which they use for mating and to protect themselves from a...

Earwigs Forficula auricularia / Dermaptera (skin-winged) These strange-looking insects appear dangerous because of their weird "forceps" on the end of their abdomen (which they use for mating and to protect themselves from a...

Earwigs Forficula auricularia / Dermaptera (skin-winged) These strange-looking insects appear dangerous because of their weird "forceps" on the end of their abdomen (which they use for mating and to protect themselves from a rear attack by ants), but they are harmless. Don't worry, the claim that they will crawl into the ears of sleeping people to bore into their brains is just an old wives' tale or the subject of a really bad science fiction movie! These omnivorous insects are nocturnal and feed on living and dead insects and decaying plant material. I found a group of these gathered in the bud ends of my milkweed. I hope they won't eat the Monarch butterfly eggs! 1209
55 This female Katydid nymph has a very long ovipositor. When she becomes an adult she will use it to lay her eggs on tree twigs.

This female Katydid nymph has a very long ovipositor. When she becomes an adult she will use it to lay her eggs on tree twigs.

This female Katydid nymph has a very long ovipositor. When she becomes an adult she will use it to lay her eggs on tree twigs. 803
56 This Katydid's "eardrum", or <em>tympanic membrane</em>, is visible on its front leg.

This Katydid's "eardrum", or tympanic membrane, is visible on its front leg.

This Katydid's "eardrum", or tympanic membrane, is visible on its front leg. 756
57 I found this long-legged Katydid Nymph during a hike in the Smokies.

I found this long-legged Katydid Nymph during a hike in the Smokies.

I found this long-legged Katydid Nymph during a hike in the Smokies. 833
58 The little holes in these Mimosa fruits are indicative of an insect that ate the developing seeds as larvae. The adult insects have escaped, leaving the holes behind. It is fun to be a "nature detective"!

The little holes in these Mimosa fruits are indicative of an insect that ate the developing seeds as larvae. The adult insects have escaped, leaving the holes behind. It is fun to be a "nature detective"!

The little holes in these Mimosa fruits are indicative of an insect that ate the developing seeds as larvae. The adult insects have escaped, leaving the holes behind. It is fun to be a "nature detective"! 697
59 These <strong>Insect eggs</strong> were on a tree trunk. Many insects overwinter as eggs or pupae since they don't have to eat in those stages.

These Insect eggs were on a tree trunk. Many insects overwinter as eggs or pupae since they don't have to eat in those stages.

These Insect eggs were on a tree trunk. Many insects overwinter as eggs or pupae since they don't have to eat in those stages. 684
60 This Red maple leaf looks as though it has a case of the Chicken Pox! These are Ocellate or Eyespot maple galls seen from the top of a leaf. The little bumps in the middle of each gall contains a single Ocellate midge larva. (See following photo) Even ...

This Red maple leaf looks as though it has a case of the Chicken Pox! These are Ocellate or Eyespot maple galls seen from the top of a leaf. The little bumps in the middle of each gall contains a single Ocellate midge larva. (See following photo) Even ...

This Red maple leaf looks as though it has a case of the Chicken Pox! These are Ocellate or Eyespot maple galls seen from the top of a leaf. The little bumps in the middle of each gall contains a single Ocellate midge larva. (See following photo) Even though these galls are unsightly, they do not cause harm to the tree. 946
61 <strong>Ocellate gall midge larva</strong>
<em>Cecidomyia ocellaris</em> 
April 30, 2008
These "eyespot" galls look like a Red Maple tree is suffering a case of Chicken Pox! If you turn over a leaf with these galls you may find the larva in the cent...

Ocellate gall midge larva Cecidomyia ocellaris April 30, 2008 These "eyespot" galls look like a Red Maple tree is suffering a case of Chicken Pox! If you turn over a leaf with these galls you may find the larva in the cent...

Ocellate gall midge larva Cecidomyia ocellaris April 30, 2008 These "eyespot" galls look like a Red Maple tree is suffering a case of Chicken Pox! If you turn over a leaf with these galls you may find the larva in the center of the gall, they are about the size of a pinhead. This photo was taken with a macro lens. Because of the small depth-of-field even the slightest breeze can make a photo out of focus. I had to take several photos before I got this. 785
62 This gall is the home of a tiny wasp larva. The larva will eat the walls of the gall. Just before pupating, it will chew a tunnel to the edge of the gall. When it becomes a wasp, it will crawl through the tunnel, chew through and then escape to the out...

This gall is the home of a tiny wasp larva. The larva will eat the walls of the gall. Just before pupating, it will chew a tunnel to the edge of the gall. When it becomes a wasp, it will crawl through the tunnel, chew through and then escape to the out...

This gall is the home of a tiny wasp larva. The larva will eat the walls of the gall. Just before pupating, it will chew a tunnel to the edge of the gall. When it becomes a wasp, it will crawl through the tunnel, chew through and then escape to the outside world! 778
63 This Leafminer sure made a mess out of this oak leaf!

This Leafminer sure made a mess out of this oak leaf!

This Leafminer sure made a mess out of this oak leaf! 772
64 Bell-like Galls on a Swamp Azalea bush

Bell-like Galls on a Swamp Azalea bush

Bell-like Galls on a Swamp Azalea bush 747
65 <strong>Termites</strong>
Isoptera
Termites do have a very important place in the ecosystem, but unfortunately they don't know the difference between our homes or a dead tree in the forest. Unlike most other insects that tunnel and live in wood, term...

Termites Isoptera Termites do have a very important place in the ecosystem, but unfortunately they don't know the difference between our homes or a dead tree in the forest. Unlike most other insects that tunnel and live in wood, term...

Termites Isoptera Termites do have a very important place in the ecosystem, but unfortunately they don't know the difference between our homes or a dead tree in the forest. Unlike most other insects that tunnel and live in wood, termites actually eat the wood too. Thanks to bacteria contained in their digestive system, they are able to digest cellulose (the woody part of plants). Termites play an important role in a woodland ecosystem by returning nutrients and carbon back into the soil. The termites' intestinal bacteria produce small amounts of methane gas. 972
66 Close-up of a Termite

Close-up of a Termite

Close-up of a Termite 749
67 <strong>A reproductive Termite</strong>
April 2009

In the spring the reproductive termites will grow wings, fly from their nests and begin new colonies. This is one that I found at my school. Ants also will fly from their nests, the easiest way to ...

A reproductive Termite April 2009 In the spring the reproductive termites will grow wings, fly from their nests and begin new colonies. This is one that I found at my school. Ants also will fly from their nests, the easiest way to ...

A reproductive Termite April 2009 In the spring the reproductive termites will grow wings, fly from their nests and begin new colonies. This is one that I found at my school. Ants also will fly from their nests, the easiest way to tell an ant from a termite is to look for a thin "waist" between the thorax and abdomen, termites don't have a constricted waist. 1295
68 This <strong>Wood Roach Nymph</strong> was photographed on the Grundy Day Loop at the Savage Gulf area of Grundy County. These are woodland inhabitants, not the nasty, invasive cockroaches that invade houses.

This Wood Roach Nymph was photographed on the Grundy Day Loop at the Savage Gulf area of Grundy County. These are woodland inhabitants, not the nasty, invasive cockroaches that invade houses.

This Wood Roach Nymph was photographed on the Grundy Day Loop at the Savage Gulf area of Grundy County. These are woodland inhabitants, not the nasty, invasive cockroaches that invade houses. 1218
69 <strong>Dog Flea</strong>
<em>Ctenocephalides canis</em> /Siphonaptera ("wingless sucker")

It is amazing how miserable something so small can make a dog feel. My parents' dog was plagued by these little critters just a couple of days after having a...

Dog Flea Ctenocephalides canis /Siphonaptera ("wingless sucker") It is amazing how miserable something so small can make a dog feel. My parents' dog was plagued by these little critters just a couple of days after having a...

Dog Flea Ctenocephalides canis /Siphonaptera ("wingless sucker") It is amazing how miserable something so small can make a dog feel. My parents' dog was plagued by these little critters just a couple of days after having a bath. They can live in the soil, so just one trip outside can re-infest an animal. The hind legs of a flea are incredibly powerful, allowing them to jump long distances. There are many species of fleas, each one being attracted to certain animals. However, a dog flea will happily eat human blood if necessary. A friend of mine once rescued an orphaned baby squirrel. I went to her house to see it and soon had small black specks on my ankles! Fleas are adapted to survive in their specific habitat by being flat-bodied and having stiff hairs, making them hard to dislodge when their unwilling host tries to nip at them. 1224
70 <strong>Jumping Bristletail</strong>
<em>Machilidae</em> spp.
Spring City, TN
May 31, 2008

This insect was photographed on a rock ledge on the Piney River Trail.

Jumping Bristletail Machilidae spp. Spring City, TN May 31, 2008 This insect was photographed on a rock ledge on the Piney River Trail.

Jumping Bristletail Machilidae spp. Spring City, TN May 31, 2008 This insect was photographed on a rock ledge on the Piney River Trail. 834
71 <strong>Jumping Bristletail</strong> - side view
<em>Machilidae</em> spp.
Knoxville, TN House Mountain State Natural Area
August 22, 2009

These insects are very well camouflaged against the rocks and lichens, they are difficult to spot unless the...

Jumping Bristletail - side view Machilidae spp. Knoxville, TN House Mountain State Natural Area August 22, 2009 These insects are very well camouflaged against the rocks and lichens, they are difficult to spot unless the...

Jumping Bristletail - side view Machilidae spp. Knoxville, TN House Mountain State Natural Area August 22, 2009 These insects are very well camouflaged against the rocks and lichens, they are difficult to spot unless they move. They eat algae, lichens and mosses (which are seen in this photo). 541
72 <strong>Springtails</strong>
Neanurinae
I found these tiny (~1mm) creatures under a decaying board during a Habitat Hunters class at the 2008 Science Camp. According to Dr. Frans Janssens, a springtail specialist from Belgium who contacted me through...

Springtails Neanurinae I found these tiny (~1mm) creatures under a decaying board during a Habitat Hunters class at the 2008 Science Camp. According to Dr. Frans Janssens, a springtail specialist from Belgium who contacted me through...

Springtails Neanurinae I found these tiny (~1mm) creatures under a decaying board during a Habitat Hunters class at the 2008 Science Camp. According to Dr. Frans Janssens, a springtail specialist from Belgium who contacted me through Bugguide.net, they are Neanurinae, he wrote that the bumps on the body are typical for many neanurids. The white substance is slime mold, possibly its food source on that log. Not being a "scientific purist", I wish these had a common name to go with them! Since the University of Tennessee at Knoxville is located only 25 miles away and these creatures are orange (the school's colors are orange and white), perhaps it could be called a UT Springtail! :) 903
73 <strong>Globular Springtails</strong>
Collembola / order = Symphypleona
<strong>Elongate Springtails</strong>
Isotomidae / order = Entomobryomorpha.
Oak Ridge, TN
March 15, 2009

I found these tiny creatures floating on the water surface in an e...

Globular Springtails Collembola / order = Symphypleona Elongate Springtails Isotomidae / order = Entomobryomorpha. Oak Ridge, TN March 15, 2009 I found these tiny creatures floating on the water surface in an e...

Globular Springtails Collembola / order = Symphypleona Elongate Springtails Isotomidae / order = Entomobryomorpha. Oak Ridge, TN March 15, 2009 I found these tiny creatures floating on the water surface in an empty cooler that had been left on a soccer field! There are 2 small predatory mites with neon-orange legs, eating the nymphs (on the right side at about 3:00 and 4:00 positions). These tiny insects jump about by an organ called a furcula. 740
74 Springtails close-up 
Collembola

Springtails are kind of cute seen up close! :)

<a href="http://www.cals.ncsu.edu/course/ent425/compendium/collem.html"> Info on Springtails</a>

Springtails close-up Collembola Springtails are kind of cute seen up close! :) Info on Springtails

Springtails close-up Collembola Springtails are kind of cute seen up close! :) Info on Springtails 716
75 <strong>Red Springtails</strong> 
Poduromorpha
Ashford, WA
June 22, 2009

It had rained during the first night we were at Mounthaven so everything was damp when I went out to explore after breakfast. I noticed the bark on some of the Hemlock trees...

Red Springtails Poduromorpha Ashford, WA June 22, 2009 It had rained during the first night we were at Mounthaven so everything was damp when I went out to explore after breakfast. I noticed the bark on some of the Hemlock trees...

Red Springtails Poduromorpha Ashford, WA June 22, 2009 It had rained during the first night we were at Mounthaven so everything was damp when I went out to explore after breakfast. I noticed the bark on some of the Hemlock trees looked reddish. When I looked closer, I noticed thousands of these tiny red springtails crawling on the tree. ***Update***Thanks to Dr. Frans Janssens (University of Antwerp, Belgium) for his help in identifying these creatures through an ID request on Bugguide.net! Here is his quote: "Not Entomobryomorpha but Poduromorpha. Family most probably Neanuridae, given the distinct red colour and if and when they did not jump away, but crawled away, when disturbed: subfamily Neanurinae. To distinguish Entomobryomorpha from Poduromorpha: Poduromorpha typically have short legs and antennae while Entomobryomorpha typically have long legs and antennae. Although there are ofcourse exceptions: Entomobryomorpha adapted to live in the soil also have short legs and antennae. To be sure, check the presence or absence of the 1st thoracic segment in dorsal view. This is sometimes hard to see and will require some practise. In Poduromorpha the segment is present. In Entomobryomorpha it is absent. In other words, in dorsal view, Poduromorpha count 3 thoracic segments, while Entomobryomorpha count only 2 thoracic segments, in dorsal aspect. Ofcourse both have 3 thoracic segments, given they have 3 pairs of legs, but in Entomobryomorpha the dorsal tergite of the 1st thoracic segment is reduced completely. Springtails need a high air humidity to survive. So you will often find them actively crawling about on the surface after rain or during the night, during thaw, etc... They will hide soon under bark or in the litter layer when the air becomes to dry." I guess in the future I'll have to take along a field microscope to ID these critters! 617
76 The white lines on this Columbine leaf  were made by 2 tiny agromyzid fly larvae called <strong>"Leafminers."</strong> Leafminers live inside the leaf between the top and bottom layers (I tell my students that it would be like them being inside a giant...

The white lines on this Columbine leaf were made by 2 tiny agromyzid fly larvae called "Leafminers." Leafminers live inside the leaf between the top and bottom layers (I tell my students that it would be like them being inside a giant...

The white lines on this Columbine leaf were made by 2 tiny agromyzid fly larvae called "Leafminers." Leafminers live inside the leaf between the top and bottom layers (I tell my students that it would be like them being inside a giant peanut butter and jelly sandwich and eating the filling but not the bread!). In the area where the egg hatches and the larva is small, the lines are small. As the larva grows and eats, the lines get larger. The tiny black dots are called "frass," a.k.a caterpillar poop. On the back side of the leaf is an opening where the adult fly exited after pupating. 1358
77 <strong>Thrips</strong>
Oak Ridge, TN
August 14, 2008

These critters are REALLY small! This was the closest I could zoom in on them with my macro lens. I was surprised to learn on the Bugguide website that the name is always plural, there is no su...

Thrips Oak Ridge, TN August 14, 2008 These critters are REALLY small! This was the closest I could zoom in on them with my macro lens. I was surprised to learn on the Bugguide website that the name is always plural, there is no su...

Thrips Oak Ridge, TN August 14, 2008 These critters are REALLY small! This was the closest I could zoom in on them with my macro lens. I was surprised to learn on the Bugguide website that the name is always plural, there is no such thing as a "thrip"! These little insects are commonly seen on flowers and trees. 913
78 <strong>Bark Louse</strong>
Order: Psocoptera
Gatlinburg, TN (University of Tennessee Field Station)
August 8, 2008

I was glad I was with a group of people from the Bugguide group when I took this photo, I would have not had any idea what this li...

Bark Louse Order: Psocoptera Gatlinburg, TN (University of Tennessee Field Station) August 8, 2008 I was glad I was with a group of people from the Bugguide group when I took this photo, I would have not had any idea what this li...

Bark Louse Order: Psocoptera Gatlinburg, TN (University of Tennessee Field Station) August 8, 2008 I was glad I was with a group of people from the Bugguide group when I took this photo, I would have not had any idea what this little critter was without their help. These tiny insects eat fungi, algae, and lichens that grow on the bark of trees. 751
79 <strong>Walkingstick</strong>
<em>Diapheromera femorata</em>
Oak Ridge, TN
September 21, 2008

I have been wanting to photograph a Walking Stick for a long time, so I was delighted to see this guy on the wall of the University of Tennessee Arboret...

Walkingstick Diapheromera femorata Oak Ridge, TN September 21, 2008 I have been wanting to photograph a Walking Stick for a long time, so I was delighted to see this guy on the wall of the University of Tennessee Arboret...

Walkingstick Diapheromera femorata Oak Ridge, TN September 21, 2008 I have been wanting to photograph a Walking Stick for a long time, so I was delighted to see this guy on the wall of the University of Tennessee Arboretum office building. He was 4" long with his front legs and antennae held together. He was incredibly camouflaged, if he had been on the ground or on a tree I would have never seen him. The following photograph shows a close-up of his head. 778
80 Close-up of the Walking stick's head

Close-up of the Walking stick's head

Close-up of the Walking stick's head 870
81 <strong>Snow Fleas</strong>
<em>Hypogastrura nivicola</em> 
Great Smoky Mountains NP, TN
February 21, 2010

I was hiking on a snow-covered trail when I noticed thousands of tiny black specks on the surface of the snow. When I got closer to inspect...

Snow Fleas Hypogastrura nivicola Great Smoky Mountains NP, TN February 21, 2010 I was hiking on a snow-covered trail when I noticed thousands of tiny black specks on the surface of the snow. When I got closer to inspect...

Snow Fleas Hypogastrura nivicola Great Smoky Mountains NP, TN February 21, 2010 I was hiking on a snow-covered trail when I noticed thousands of tiny black specks on the surface of the snow. When I got closer to inspect them I was surprised to see them jumping. I knew immediately that they were Snow Fleas, a type of springtail. Don't worry, they aren't the biting kind of "flea"! These tiny critters only eat decaying organic matter as well as fungi, algae, pollen, bacteria, roundworms, and rotifers. I picked a bad time to leave my macro lens behind that day! :( 1006

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