Monday, May 4, 2015

I Like Bugs, but This One...

(This post was reclaimed from Bubblews, where it appeared on June 5, 2014. Bubblews destroyed the cell-phone picture I snapped. Maybe that was just as well; a squeamish reader commented that "it looks like a ROACH!", although to me it was obvious from the photo that the creature was not in the roach family. I now think it may have been a stonefly, possibly Pteronarcys dorsata, as shown here, although the antennae on the specimen they show aren't "feathery":

http://www.insectidentification.org/insect-description.asp?identification=American-Salmonfly

Since both image and insect are long gone, I'll never know for sure what it was, but stoneflies are big enough and are found in the time and place where I found the insect that inspired this post. Topic credit: SamElder for asking: www.bubblews.com/news/3669386-do-you-like-bugs ?)

Last night, on the way back from the computer center, I saw this insect outside a convenience store and thought, "What is it, exactly?" It's the size of a good-sized moth, about two and a half inches from head to wing tips as posed here, and has feathery antennae like a moth, and is obviously attracted to the light from the window like a moth. The body looks more like a stag beetle's, but it's not a stag beetle. What is this thing?
I have mixed feelings about insects in general. I think most of them look interesting, and are scientifically interesting...yet I hate to touch one, or worse yet be touched by one. Even if it's a beautiful butterfly. (Some of the most beautiful butterflies in my part of the world feast on dung and carrion.) So does that count as liking insects, or disliking them? Can we just say I think it's interesting, and even profitable, to learn about them and find out which ones are and which ones are not a problem?