CENTRAL FLORIDA CRITTER OF THE DAY: Earth-Boring Scarab Beetle (Geotrupes sp.)
New to my buggy life list.
3 species listed for Florida: G. blackburnii blackburnii; G. egeriei; G. splendidus (source: http://www.fsca-dpi.org/Coleoptera/Mike/geotrup.htm)
“Adults feed on dung, fungi, and decaying vegetable matter. Larva feed on old cow dung.”
Earth-Boring Scarab Beetle (Geotrupes sp.)
CENTRAL FLORIDA CRITTER OF THE DAY: Polka-dot Wasp Moth (Syntomeida epilais)
aka Oleander Moth
Does not sting. Wasp mimic. Adults pollinate. Flies during the day. The caterpillar of this species has the common name: oleander caterpillar.
Larval hosts: Florida native: DEVIL’S POTATO; RUBBERVINE (Echites umbellatus) (limited to coast of southern Florida); Exotic: Oleander which has expanded it range throughout the U.S.
Learn more: http://beautifulnativeplants.blogspot.com/2016/02/an-exception-to-rules.html
Learn more2: http://entnemdept.ufl.edu/creatures/orn/oleander_caterpillar.htm
Shown on Florida Native Plant: Bidens alba
Polka-dot Wasp Moth (Syntomeida epilais)
Photo of caterpillar on Oleander from 2010: https://centralfloridacritteroftheday.files.wordpress.com/2016/11/oleandercat100110.jpg
CENTRAL FLORIDA CRITTER OF THE DAY: Masked Chafer Beetle (Cyclocephala sp.)
Adults nocturnal, come to lights. Larvae feed on roots. This one was in the clutches of a tiny spider under the patio light.
Family Scarabaeidae – Scarab Beetles
Subfamily Dynastinae – Rhinoceros Beetles
Genus Cyclocephala – Masked Chafers
Learn more: https://texasinsects.tamu.edu/masked-chafer/
CENTRAL FLORIDA CRITTER OF THE DAY: Davis’ Southeastern Dog-Day Cicada (Neotibicen sp. probably davisi davisi)
an annual species. Periodical cicadas do not occur in Florida.
There has been a taxonomic change to the Family Cicadidae – Cicadas
Cicadas are seldom of economic importance in Florida. source: http://entnemdept.ufl.edu/creatures/misc/bugs/cicadas.htm
“On the positive side, it should be noted that cicadas do not bite or sting and harbor no organisms known to be harmful to vertebrates. They provide food for many kinds of wildlife, including birds, small mammals, and other insects. Newly emerged adults are easily caught and have been used for food by humans, either raw or cooked, and are even credited with having saved some family groups from starvation early in the history of North America.” ibid.
Shown on Florida Native Plant: Blackberry (Rubus sp.)
My take: https://floridawildlifegardentails.wordpress.com/2015/09/18/sing-sing-a-song-annual-cicada/
Take Two: You say Ci-KAY-da and I say Ci-kAHHH-da
Davis’ Southeastern Dog-Day Cicada (Neotibicen sp. probably davisi davisi)
CENTRAL FLORIDA CRITTER OF THE DAY: Spicebush Swallowtail Butterfly Caterpillar (Papilio troilus)
Larval host: Sassafras (Sassafras albidum), spicebush (Lindera benzoin), red bay (Persea borbonia), swamp bay (Persea palustris) and the category I invasive camphortree (Cinnamomum camphora)
Shown on Florida Native Plant: SWAMP BAY (Persea palustris)
Photos of Adult: https://centralfloridacritteroftheday.wordpress.com/2018/08/05/spicebush-swallowtail-butterfly-papilio-troilus/
CENTRAL FLORIDA CRITTER OF THE DAY: Withered Mocis Moth (Mocis marcida)
Came to patio light after dark.
New to my buggy life list. My encounter was submitted and accepted to add this species to the Osceola county Florida checklist at butterfliesandmoths.com https://www.butterfliesandmoths.org/sighting_details/1188829
Superfamily Noctuoidea – Owlet Moths and kin
larval hosts: grasses; (non-native Panicum maximum (source: Natural History Museum, London))
larvae said to be a pest of pasture and turf grasses in Florida (source: https://www.jstor.org/stable/3493999?origin=crossref&seq=1#page_scan_tab_contents)
Host for wasps “Parasites reared from the pupae were not specific to any single Mocis species; they comprised two Sarcophagids, three Braconids, two Chalcidids and four Ichneumonids. Species found preying on Mocis larvae were a Tenebrionid, Bothrotes fortis Csy., and a Carabid, Pinacodera sp. ” (source: https://www.cabdirect.org/cabdirect/abstract/19750531212)