Monday Night Mystery

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Tonight’s challenge, photographed in North Carolina, comes in two parts: white and red.

Part 1: what is the white bug? (5 points, at least to level of Family)

Part 2: what are the red things? (5 points, at least to level of Family)

The cumulative points winner for the month of August will take home their choice of 1) any 8×10-sized print from my photo galleries, or 2) a guest post here on Myrmecos.

Good luck!

15 thoughts on “Monday Night Mystery”

  1. The white bug is certainly the nymph of some type of fulgoroid hopper – I’ll go with family Flatidae, since members of that family often possess such cottony body coverings.

    The red bug at first I presumed was a mite, but I’m gonna go out on a limb and suggest they are parastic wasps of the family Dryinidae.

  2. The homopteran looks like a Flatidae to me and looks alot like an Anormenis chloris nymph. Need to think about the red organism for a bit

  3. The red things might be Fulgoraecia exigua in the small family Epipyropidae. I’m don’t know for sure if the younger larvae are ever that red, though. I always manage to find a few cocoons under the tree in my yard every year.

  4. While I have no clue about the protagonists classifications, it seems odd to me that a parasite/parasitoid makes its host so much more conspicuous.

    Increases predation risk for all of them, doesn’t it? Or is it part of the plan?

  5. The white hairy bug is a Metcalfa pruinosa, and the “little red riding bug” seems to be a Trombidium holosericeum feeding on the leafhopper.

  6. Okay, I’m going with a newly hatched Cixiidae. The females oviposit on plant stems and cover with a white, waxy material. The red? Possibly plant material from the oviposition site.

    There does seem to be something that resembles a mite by the middle leg.

  7. Just learning that there is a caterpillar (Fulgoraecia exigua) that parasitizes planthoppers made my day (thanks JasonC!), so I should probably quit while I’m ahead.

    However, the reticulations on the eye and anterior thorax remind me of Metcalfa pruinosa (Flatidae).

    The interestingly symmetrical red attachments could be the dryinid parasitoid Neodryinus typhlocybae – supposedly an effective biological control agent (or Gonatopus torvus). They look to be in the proper place for dryinids, but the only pictures I’ve seen aren’t red.

    Red is probably due to carotenoids that protect from UV (among other things) and most arboreal Parasitengonina mites are red. If I could have seen legs, then I might have guessed Erythraeidae or Trombidiidae, but I think I’ll stick with the things I don’t know anything about and vote Dryinidae.

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

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