Tag Archives: Beetles

Sweetpotato bug

Sweetpotato bug
This bug (Physomerus grossipes) is a fairly recent introduction to Hawaii, most likely sneaking in on an imported plant. It’s from the family Coreidae, otherwise known as leaf footed bugs. It feeds by sucking juices out of various plants, including sweet potatoes. I found this one wandering across a window screen, some distance from anything edible.

Rolling, rolling, rolling, keep that …

Dung beetles prepare a dung ball prior to rolling it away.Dung beetles roll their dung ball down a steep hill.
I came across these industrious beetles about half way up a steep trail. They’re rolling dung beetles, as opposed to ‘tunnelers’ or ‘dwellers.’ Tunneling dung beetles dig a hole and bury their dung. Dwellers simply live in the dung where they find it. Rolling dung beetles make a ball, roll it away, and then bury it. In each case, the purpose of this activity is for the female to lay her eggs in the dung. When the egg hatches the larva will have its food source ready and waiting. Yum!

I’m glad my mother didn’t opt for this strategy, but dung beetles make such a valuable contribution in recycling this waste that they’re often introduced into areas to help in this process. And that’s not the only laudable quality they possess. According to livescience.com, dung beetles can also navigate using the Milky Way, the only non-human creatures known to do so.

I have to say, I was a little worried about how these two would get on on this steep hill. They weren’t around when I returned.

Chinese rose beetle

A Chinese rose beetle on the Big Island.

This is a Chinese rose beetle shortly after I evicted it from the house. They usually get in the house attached to laundry that was hanging on a line, towels being a particular favorite. Identifying this bug helped explain the condition of the hedge behind the house, where the leaves are so perforated they look like lace.

Breakfast strikes back

Breakfast strikes backAt first, this green anole had the bug in its mouth, but then events took a turn for the worse. At first I thought the bug was a larder beetle, but now I believe it’s a Chinese rose beetle, though I wouldn’t bet the farm on that. In the end, it got away. The anole did not look pleased to have these events witnessed.

For more information about green anoles, go to en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carolina_anole.