Insect Highlights

Insect Highlights for the Week of July 29,2003

Cicada killer stinger


The large wasps you see flying by are called Cicada killers. They capture and paralyze cicadas and bury them in the ground and are active during July and August. The larvae develop and emerge next year. They are not aggressive but very curious. They can sting if handled, but this is not very likely.

Cicada Killers



You may get lucky and get a glimpse of the Mantispidfly. Adults have enlarged front legs that they use to capture prey. The larvae are parasitic in the egg sacs of ground spiders. These in sects are more common in the south.


Grape Phylloxera


The funny bumps on grape leaves are caused by the grape phylloxera. This insect has a complicated life cycle and is found on both the roots and leaves of grapes. Unless a large percentage of the grape are affected there is no reason to treat. Once the growths appear you need to wait until next year for control.


Little white fuzzy things are on the stems of Hostas, sunflowers, asters, and raspberries. We have been seeing the nymphs of a flatid planthopper. In some years they are very hard to find. They cause little damage but can show up in enough numbers that they capture you attention. We also find related “wooly” aphids on some plants. No need to treat unless the plants start to wilt, yellow or show signs of stunted growth. They will soon transform into adults.

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URL is Updated 07/29/03.

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