Monday Night Mystery

This insect was photographed on the stem of a yellow composite in an Illinois priarie.

The nose knows, and this little insect appears to have quite a long one. But do you know?

Ten Myrmecos Points (TM) for the first correct guess to genus and species of our mystery insect. Supporting information about identifying characters must be provided to claim points.

As usual, the cumulative points winner for the month of August will win their choice of 1) any 8×10-sized print from my photo galleries, or 2) a guest post here at Myrmecos on a safe-for-work topic of their choosing.

7 thoughts on “Monday Night Mystery”

  1. Tooth-nosed snout weevil: Haplorhynchites pseudomexicanus. Because it has a long snout, like a weevil, and this is the first species I found on bug guide that looked kinda like it. That’s what I know about weevils.

  2. Hummm I’m going to go with Haplorhynchites aeneus instead. The reddish coloration and short red setae look like they separate this species form the others in the genus. I’m also going to go with range as a character, H. aeneus has a more midwestern distribution, the others (pesuedomex) are SW.

    If not, it’s at least a Rhynchitinae with the tooth-nose!

  3. Alternatively it could be: Haplorhynchites planifrons. Which I also found on bug guide under weevils and which looked similar.

    Sorry that’s the best I can do for identifying characters. I just go on what the internets tell me and hope its correct.

  4. After some squinting and tilting of laptop screen, I see that this weevil is slightly red, So I think Chris is correct. The range is also key, naturally.

  5. James.C. Trager

    I’m with Chris on this one, H. aeneus. Its position on a yellow composite is also supportive. Females of this species almost cut through the capitular peduncles of a variety of composites belonging to the sunflower tribe, then lay eggs in the wilting, dangling flower heads. Later inspection reveals developing larvae of the weevils in the shriveled head. These overwinter in the ground, pupate there, then re-emerge as adults in summer. I call them “composite decapitating weevils”. BTW, they also diverge from the yellow and occasionally use pink-rayed Echinacea spp. as food plants.

  6. Pingback: Answer to the Monday Night Mystery – MYRMECOS - Insect Photography - Insect Pictures

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